Each week, I will feature a new UX resource that is free…until I run out of free resources, that is. I will tag these articles as UX Freebie so they are easier to locate. In addition, I will tweet the articles and tag them #uxfreebie in the event you would rather search through them there. The criteria for a resource to be a freebie is simple – it must be free, reviewed by me and UX related. This part of the site is about guiding you to a free UX resource so good you would have paid for it.


The Encyclopedia of Human-Computer Interaction, 2nd Ed.This week we have a “rabbit hole resource.” I call it this because it comes from the Interaction Design Foundation – an organization that offers a plethora of free online resources, namely eBooks. And once you check out this resource, you’ll find other on their site, thus tumbling down the proverbial rabbit hole of knowledge. From the foundation’s web page:


The Interaction Design Foundation is a ten year old, transformative, non-profit community focused on educating, informing and stimulating design professionals and students, as well as providing first grade curricular and training materials for universities and professional corporations around the globe.
The organization has created a powerful online, self-paced course and community platform, allowing design enthusiasts all over the world to learn from their mentors and network with peers in their own time. Members of the community can work towards career advancement via a blend of video lessons, eBooks, textbooks, design encyclopedia, membership forums and global design events, as well as via high-level, curated social media content.

So this week I am featuring The Encyclopedia of Human-Computer Interaction, 2nd Ed. This is really a compilation of resources from leading authors, available free online. They describe it as:

Free textbooks written by 100+ leading designers, bestselling authors and Ivy League professors. The textbooks are assembled in a gigantic 4000+ page encyclopedia covering the design of interactive products and services like websites, household objects, smartphones, computer software, aircraft cockpits, you name it.

The content of this encyclopedia is amazing. There is everything from visual representation to wearable computing. I’m not sure there is a topic that is not covered herein and quite a few I hadn’t even thought of. The entire content is online and organized into chapters rather than specific encyclopedic entries as many of us might be used to. This makes it nice because you can simply read the sections you are interested in. It’s a go-to resource you should certainly bookmark for future reference and the best part is it is free.

One other benefit: As I mention above, the Interaction Design Foundation has a slew of other references on their site you can check out as well. I currently am enjoying Gamification at Work
Designing Engaging Business Software. It’s a great resource for a project I am working on now. And there are tons of other great guides and eBooks.

Download link: The Encyclopedia of Human-Computer Interaction, 2nd Ed.



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