User Interface (UI) is a set of tools and methods by which the user interacts with various information products (sites, services, programs, etc.). Every owner of the business represented on the web should understand that the condition for the effectiveness of an Internet resource is the coincidence of the tasks of the site with the desires of potential customers. To solve this difficult problem UX design (user experience design) is used today. If you are not ready to do everything yourself, there are effective UI design and development services to rely on.
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What part does UI design play?
What does the term “interface” mean? As simply as possible, it is a set of tools that allow two systems to interact and solve the same problem. You probably won’t deny that interfaces are everywhere nowadays.
Let’s consider as an example a faucet in the bathroom. It performs 3 options, like installing a knob-turn, a lever, or a touch tap. Materials and appearance are also different. Yet, in all cases, it is a crane control element that allows you to adjust the pressure and temperature of the water. It is also a kind of interface.
If you are a plumber, then, of course, you can choose one of the options yourself. But it is better to ask the landlord which way of interacting with the plumbing system he prefers. Also, it would hardly occur to you to install a water column in the middle of the bathroom. This option is certainly not modern, and besides, it does not solve the user’s tasks well.
The same situation is with applications, as well. What the user sees when launching your product is the interface, also known as UI (user interface). The task of the designer is to show the user how the application works through the interface and bring it to the desired result, whether it is ordering products from the store or setting an alarm clock. But how do you know what exactly the user expects from the application? How will he interact with him? What are his preferences? The answers to these questions are in the plane of UX design (user experience).
Principles of user interface design
The principles of UI design are recommendations that will help you create efficient and convenient interfaces. They are based on the principles of human interaction with the computer, as well as the principles of graphic design.
Here are some of the most necessary UI design principles to keep in mind:
- Symmetry creates a sense of balance and order, making it easier for users to navigate the interface.
- Contrast helps to create a visual hierarchy and draws attention to important elements. It can also be used to facilitate reading and understanding of interfaces.
- Alignment makes interfaces more neat and organized, and can also be used to guide users’ views on important components.
- Proximity makes it easier for users to navigate between linked elements by prompting them to click on the right one.
- Feedback. Configuring feedback can help users continue to interact with your interface and easily cope with the problems that have arisen.
- Accessibility. It is a design principle that describes what and how objects can be used. It defines the relationship between the user and the object.
- Display. This user interface design principle refers to how users associate certain actions with certain elements on the screen and vice versa. For example, people often expect an envelope image to be associated with email and a magnifying glass icon with a search.
- Fitts law. This law describes the relationship between size, location, and ease of use when dealing with physical objects. It can also be used in the design of digital interfaces.
Is UI inseparable from UX design?
UX design is what we can call a user experience design. From this follows UI design which is explained as a user interface design. Each of them has its own tasks and requirements for performance.
UX design task
- Review user experience and needs.
- Develop a user’s path to the target.
- Create a prototype.
- Give a user a personalized and memorable experience.
UI design tasks
- Create an interface based on these needs.
- Develop a graphical interface (fonts, color schemes, buttons, illustrations, animations).
- Visualize a prototype.
- Give a user aesthetic pleasure.
As you can see, UI and UX are closely related. UX cannot be visually realized without UI design. However, a beautiful interface designed without a deep understanding of the user is likely to fail. This is what experts, like Dworkz, say.
Not surprisingly, UI is not now considered in isolation from UX, and the corresponding profession sounds like a UI / UX designer.
Making the conclusion
Typically, the user interface development process starts with user and competitor research and ends with the testing and delivery of necessary materials to developers. However, each agency can have its own secrets and sequence of stages. To make our long story short, we want to highlight one of the most crucial stages in UI design and development. It’s the prototyping.
A prototype is an interactive mockup that reflects he look and feel of an application. Due to its clickability, you can evaluate the logic of the product. Therefore, it is primarily needed by the designers themselves to make sure there are no errors in the user flow.
Other benefits of the prototyping are:
- it is checked by the developers during the implementation of the project;
- it can be presented to consumers for testing purposes;
- it allows potential investors to be convinced of the viability of the idea.
There are many interface design software products that can be used to create a prototype. For instance, in Dworkz, designers use the Figma cloud solution because it’s ideal for teamwork. With it, you can work together on the same file and keep changes in sync. In addition, Figma has many features that make it easier to work on the interface, such as the automatic alignment of all indents and bulk editing of components. Once the prototype is finished, agreed upon, and finalized, it’s time to hand it over to the developers.