Golden UI/UX Books Every Designer Should Know About
⏱ Reading Time: 7 minutes
It is easy to ignore UI/UX books as designers on the pretext that books take too long to publish and therefore their content would be obsolete by the time it hits the shelves.
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However, books come with eternal principles to help you so why not let them help you with building a design career? Also, some writers are way ahead of their time so surely some can be of help! Change the trajectory of your design career by learning new things from different fields!
Is There Even a Thing as a UI/UX Books?
UI/UX designers need to understand diverse areas. Some of the best books for these designers will introduce a dimension beyond web design and development. The authors want a reader to understand development principles beyond coding.
Some of the top books are in psychology and art. You will also find books that dig deeper into coding, helping you to understand your craft. There are great titles on the mind of a web designer, helping you to get into the creative zone and produce the best work.
While UI/UX design has been there for only a decade or slightly more, a passionate designer will enjoy the thoughts of authors who foresaw some of these developments coming decades before. They share principles that will apply to web design without mentioning web design directly.
Here are some of the most amazing titles for UI/UX designers to read!
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Don’t Make Me Think
Don’t Make Me Think is a must-read for any web designer. It does not give you any direct tips on coding or web design. Instead, Steve Krug wants you to see the world and your website from the perspective of a visitor.
The author takes you through examples of blind spots that developers should avoid to produce captivating design work. Krug is practical such that you can understand the idea without any demonstration. At the same time, he proposes real examples that will awaken your sense of understanding.
The book is written for students who want to learn alone and improve their design skills. Steve has added a lot of photos to his book, making it even easier to understand. You will also encounter a lot of illustrations and easy-to-navigate modules. These examples make the content easier to understand without the guidance of a tutor.
Picture 1. When a function (UX) meets creativity (UI)
The book was published in the year 2000 and still captures very potent ideas on design. The author pays a lot of attention to human-computer interactions. If you understand how human beings interact with computers, you will develop apps and websites that offer a solution instead of existing for the sake of it.
One of the main ideas you will learn from the author is satisficing. In his words, human beings will embrace the first solution better than any other that comes afterward. For this reason, your target should always be to hit the market first and capture the attention of your target clientele.
The 216 pages will help you understand the expectations of your target consumers from your website. According to Steve, website, and app users are looking for a person who can solve their problems fast, easily, and as directly as possible. It explains why the more than 300,000 readers who bought the book between the years 2000 and 2013 insisted on simple designs.
Steve is simple in his description of design processes. His idea was to offer a book that could transform your design career in the two hours it will take you to travel from one state to the other. The sequel, Rocket Surgery Made Easy by the same author published in 2010 is more specific on how you can develop apps, websites, and software that is user-friendly.
The Design of Everyday Things
It is one of the best UI/UX design books in the market because it does not talk in coding language. The book addresses how you see an app, software, website, or any platform from the need perspective of your target consumer. The author is regarded among the best cognitive scientists and usability engineers in the world today. With such a profile, Donald Norman has done justice to the book.
The content in the book is inspiring for any designer. The author has also used very simple and interesting language, helping to demystify web design and development. To spice up the book, he has very useful tips that you will apply in every development project you take up.
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Donald Norman provides observable examples from nature. This is a clever way of simplifying web development, especially giving you inspiration from nature. He points at nature as an unending source of inspiration for developers undertaking some of the most complex design projects.
Reference to nature has a transformational effect on designers. You will begin to appreciate nature and imitate it in your projects. Some of the natural phenomena that you viewed as bad will take a different shape once you review them through the perspective given by Donald Norman.
Some of the best designers have described the book as a key to unlock creativity for designers. Whether you are a seasoned designer or are taking your initial projects, this is a must-read. The ideas and examples shared in the book will change the perspective you have developed about web design.
The Non-Designer’s Design Book
The title is extremely curious because Robin Williams almost suggests that the book is not meant for designers. However, the idea is to generate interest in web and app design. Robin takes the role of an initiator who ushers developers into the world of web and application design. In her words, your orientation is crucial in shaping the eventual quality of work you produce.
Robin advocates for a clear and straightforward design style. She is an advocate of simple designs that will capture the attention of target users. It is one of the greatest lessons you will learn about endearing your designs to the market.
Robin has four simple principles anchoring her idea of web development. She fronts proximity, alignment, repetition, and contrast. As suggested in the title, these principles are applicable in any situation where you need an engaging and customer-friendly product.
Why is the book fit for novices and design gurus?
The Non-Designer’s Design Book takes you back to the basics. For a novice, you have a starting point so that your work does not appear too taxing for you to hack. Keep it simple and you will produce an incredible design with your limited skills.
Web and app design gurus have a unique serving from Robin. She wants you to return to where your web design career began. Once you toy with all the designs you can imagine, do not plateau in your creativity. By going back to basics, you have the perfect inspiration to meet the demands of any project.
Design for Interaction
Dan Saffer uses the book to introduce developers to Interaction Design. He uses a very practical approach that simplifies the concept even for developers working on their first project. Simply put, Dan is helping you to deliver a product that customers will love using. In the age of user experience, this is a book you cannot skip.
The author has gone into detail to cover some of the most important aspects of interaction design. Among the principles discussed in depth are
The Need for a Design Strategy
According to Dan, designing your design will give you an idea of the end even before you begin the journey. You can foresee trouble and prepare for the imminent challenges.
Uncover peoples behaviors, goals, and motivation before delving into any design work. The research will help you to deliver a product that is aligned with these behaviors and interaction habits.
Brainstorming Best Practices
The aim is to create the best solutions for the products you send to the market. It revamps your creative process, enabling you to beat your competition.
Understand the Processes
Put in the work! Understand the processes and methods that define the behavior of products.
Dan insists on the need to develop interactive products. The target customer must feel as though the website or app was designed for him. This principle is especially important in an age where website traffic and return visitors are important in digital marketing.
The Elements of User Experience
Jesse James is the author of one of the most important UI/UX books for future developers. Remember that user experience is the hallmark of any successful website. The competition experienced on digital platforms today demands a world-class user experience every day. It is this concern that drove Jesse James to write a book about the user experience from the perspective of a designer.
According to Jesse James, you must first understand the behaviors and mannerisms of internet users. If you can match their expectations, these visitors will spend more time on your website. A good user experience is also an incentive to keep returning to a website!
There are more authors of UI/UX books and related materials. Some of the recommended books have no direct relationship with web development. Or do they? The discussions in the mentioned books open your mind to a new UI/UX design perspective. And there isn’t such thing as knowing too much (in any field) so we really recommend you to dive in!
Adrian Lomezzo is a freelance writer at usessaywriters who has been exploring the main strategies of marketing and teaching students to get new skills for 5 years. He users personal experience and the ideas of experts who have changed the world during their time. Adrian is happy to see people succeed.
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