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Project overview

UsabLog is a lightweight usability test logging application that I designed and built to serve my own needs. This tool, when paired with Vimeo’s automatic linking of timestamps to points in a video, provided an extremely inexpensive way for me to share usability results with a broader audience.

Process

This project is admittedly self-referential. In my jobs to this point, I had the benefit of Morae from TechSmith to log usability tests, and I had come to depend on its time-synced notes. At Daxko, however, I was testing remotely over GoToMeeting almost exclusively, and Morae was overkill.

I began this project by sketching in code; I knew loosely what I wanted to accomplish, and I iterated on the app quickly after each test. Once I had basic logging in place, I enlisted some colleagues to use the app, and I used their usability tests as usability tests on the usability test app. (Talk about meta.) Their feedback led to the ability to tag tasks, errors, and quotes quickly through hashtag-like shortcuts.

UsaBlog reached a point of mature utility for me, and I haven’t worked on it much sense, though I still use it frequently.

More information

Live app – usablog.willsansbury.com
UsabLog repo on GitHub
Mention in Nate Bolt’s Remote Research blog

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