UX Matters have written a summary on some of the Principles of Great UX Design.
The article is a summary of a panel discussion written by Janet M. Six, covering Design Principles and and also how UX design takes place in organizations with designers of difference backgrounds.
UX Design Principles
—It’s often easy to think of a user journey like a storybook. If you open most books to any given page and select a word, you’ll be met with an abundance of context on the page. You’ll usually see the title of the book, the chapter, the page number, and the word will appear contextually within a sentence, paragraph, and page. Ensure that users are contextually aware of where they are within their journey.
—Be approachable, trustworthy, and transparent. Provide human interactions over machine-like interactions.
—Establish a strong information scent. Provide wayfinding signs.
—Reduce the user’s cognitive workload whenever possible. Be consistent and clear, and establish a strong visual hierarchy.
—Establish a strong signal-to-noise ratio. Avoid distractions, jargon, and long loading times.
The discussion also covered
Layers of great design
Discoverability—Can users discover how to accomplish their tasks the first time they look at a product?
Learnability—Can users easily learn a product’s interaction models and predict how to move from one part of the product to another? On repeat visits, can they remember how to engage with the product to accomplish their goals?
Efficiency—Once users have become repeat users, can they accomplish repetitive tasks quickly and easily?
System performance—How nimbly does the user interface respond when users click a button or interact with the product? If it’s slow, designers have a part to play in improving the total experience, including system response times when user are performing tasks.
Delight—Does the product delight users? If you can instill an emotional connection to a product in users, they will champion your product and share its virtues.
Photo reference: John Maeda at TED on Simplicity