Monday Oct 29, 2012

Apps UX Launches Blueprints for Mobile User Experiences

By Misha Vaughan, Oracle Applications User Experience

At Oracle OpenWorld 2012 this year, the Oracle Applications User Experience (Apps UX) team announced the release of Mobile User Experience Functional Design Patterns. These patterns are designed to work directly with Oracle’s Fusion Middleware, specifically, ADF Mobile.  The Oracle Application Development Framework for mobile users enables developers to build one application that can be deployed to multiple mobile device platforms.

blue print

These same mobile design patterns provide the guidance for Oracle teams to develop Fusion Mobile expenses.



Application developers can use Oracle’s mobile design patterns to design iPhone, Android, or browser-based smartphone applications. We are sharing our mobile design patterns and their baked-in, scientifically proven usability to enable Oracle customers and partners to build mobile applications quickly.

A different way of thinking and designing.
Lynn Rampoldi-Hnilo, Senior Manager of Mobile User Experiences for Apps UX, says mobile design has to be compelling. “It needs to be optimized for the device, and be visually rich and simple,” she said. “What is really key is that you are designing for a user’s most personal device, the device that they will have with them at all times of the day.”

Katy Massucco, director of the overall design patterns site, said: “You need to start with a simplified task flow. Everything should be a natural interaction. The action should be relevant and leveraging the device. It should be seamless.”

She suggests that developers identify the essential tasks that a user would want to do while mobile. “They need to understand the user and the context,” she added.



A sample inline action design pattern

What people are saying
Reactions to the release of the design patterns have been positive. Debra Lilley, Oracle ACE Director and Fusion User Experience Advocate (FXA), has already demo’ed Fusion Mobile Expenses widely.  Fellow Oracle Ace Director Ronald van Luttikhuizen, called it a “cool demo by @debralilley of the new mobile expenses app.” FXA member Floyd Teter says he is already cooking up some plans for using mobile design patterns.  We hope to see those ideas at Collaborate or ODTUG in 2013.

For another perspective on why user experience is such an important focus for mobile applications, check out this video by John King, Director, and Monty Latiolais, President, both from ODTUG, or the Oracle Development Tools User Group.

In a separate interview by e-mail, Latiolais wrote: “I enjoy the fact we can take something that, in the past, has been largely subjective, and now apply to it a scientifically proven look and feel. Trusting Oracle’s UX Design Patterns, the presentation really can become one less thing to worry about. As someone with limited ADF experience, that is extremely beneficial.”


King, who was also interviewed by e-mail, wrote: “User Experience is about making the task at hand as easy and error-free as possible. Oracle's UX labs worked hard to make the User Experience in the new Fusion Applications as good as possible; ADF makes adding tested, consistent, user experiences a declarative exercise by leveraging that work. As we move applications onto mobile platforms, user experience is the driving factor. Customers are "spoiled" by a bevy of fantastic applications, and ours cannot disappoint them. Creating applications that enable users to quickly and effectively accomplish whatever task is at hand takes thought and practice. Developers must become ’power users’ and then create applications that they and their users will love.”


Thursday Oct 18, 2012

Introducing the New Face of Fusion Applications

By Misha Vaughan and Kathy Miedema, Oracle Applications User Experience

At OpenWorld 2012, the Oracle Applications User Experience (UX) team unveiled the new face of Fusion Applications. You may have seen it in sessions presented by Chris Leone, Anthony Lye, Jeremy Ashley or others, or you may have gotten a look on the demogrounds.

Fuse Home
This screenshot shows the new Oracle Fusion Applications entry experience.


Why are we delivering a new face for Fusion Applications? Because, says Ashley, the vice president of the Oracle Applications User Experience team, we want to provide a simple, modern, productive way for users to complete their top quick-entry tasks. The idea is to provide a clear, productive user experience that is backed by the full functionality of Fusion Applications.

The first release of the new face of Fusion focuses on three types of users. It provides a fully functional gateway to Fusion Applications for:

  • New and casual users who need quick access to self-service tasks
  • Professional users who need fast access to quick-entry, high-volume tasks
  • Users who are looking for a way to quickly brand their portal for employees

The new face of Fusion allows users to move easily from navigation to action, Ashley said, and it has been designed for any device -- Mac, PC, iPad, Android, SmartBoard -- in the browser.

Fuse Employee Directory
The Oracle Fusion Applications Employee Directory.

How did we build it?

The new face of Fusion essentially is a custom shell, developed by the Apps UX team, and a set of page templates that embodies a simple design aesthetic. It’s repeatable, providing consistency across its pages, and requires little to zero training.

More specifically, the new face of Fusion has been built on ADF. The Applications UX team created pages in JDeveloper using local tasks flows bound to existing view objects. Three new components were commissioned from ADF, and existing Fusion components were re-skinned to deliver a simple, modern user experience.

It really is that simple – and to prove that point, we’ve been sharing our story around the new face of Fusion on several Oracle channels such as this one.

Want to know more?

Check the VoX blog for our favorite highlights from OpenWorld, which included demos of the new face of Fusion.

And take a look at these posts from Ace Directors Debra Lilley, and Floyd Teter. Special mention to Floyd for the first screen shot credit. Also a nod to Wilfred vander Deijl for capturing the demo to share as part 1 and part 2.

We will also be hitting upcoming user group conferences with our demos, and you can always reach out to one of our Fusion User Experience Advocates for a look.


Thursday Oct 11, 2012

Our Favorite Highlights from OpenWorld 2012

By Kathy Miedema and Misha Vaughan, Oracle Applications User Experience

The Oracle Applications User Experience (UX) team’s activities around OpenWorld expand every year, but this year we certainly raised the bar.  

Members of our team helped deliver three, separate, all-day training events in the week prior to OpenWorld. Our Fusion User Experience Advocates (FXA) and Applications UX Sales Ambassadors (SAMBA) have all-new material around the Oracle user experience to deliver at conferences in the coming year - Fusion Applications design patterns, mobile design patterns, and the new face of Fusion. We also delivered a hands-on workshop sharing user experience tools for our customers that is designed to answer this question: "If I have no UX staff, what do I do?"

We also spent the weeks just before OpenWorld preparing to talk about the new face of Fusion Applications, a greatly simplified entry experience into Fusion Applications for self-service users, CRM users, and IT managers who want to change the look and feel quickly. Special thanks to Oracle ACE Director Floyd Teter for the first mention of our project.

Jeremy Ashley
Jeremy Ashley, VP, Oracle Applications User Experience

Customers may have seen one of the many OpenWorld session demos of the new face of Fusion, which will be available with Fusion Applications soon. It was shown in sessions by Oracle's Chris Leone, Anthony Lye, and our own Vice President, Jeremy Ashley, among others.  

Leone reinforced the importance of user experience as one of three main design principles for Fusion Applications, emphasizing that Fusion was designed from the beginning to be intelligent, social, and mobile. User experience highlights of the new face of Fusion, he said, included the need for "zero training," and he called the experience "easy to use." He added that deploying it for HCM self-service would be effortless. 

lab tour
Customers take part in a usability lab tour during OpenWorld 2012.

Customers also may have seen the new face of Fusion on the demogrounds or during one of our teams' chartered lab tours at the end of the week. We tested other new designs at our on-site lab in the Intercontinental Hotel, next to Moscone West.

demopod
Applications User Experience team members show eye-tracking and mobile demos at OOW.

We were also excited to kick off new branches of the Oracle Usability Advisory Board, which now has groups in Latin America and the Middle East, in addition to North America and EMEA.  

And we were pleasantly surprised by the interest in one of our latest research projects, Oracle Voice, which is designed to enable faster data input for on-the-go users. We offer a big thank-you to the Nuance demopod for sharing the demo with OpenWorld attendees. 

For more information on our program and products like the new face of Fusion, please comment below. 





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Check here for opinions, updates, and events from Oracle's Applications User Experience team: Applications Cloud, E-Business Suite, JD Edwards, Siebel, PeopleSoft, and more.

Misha Vaughan
Misha Vaughan, Director, Applications User Experience
@mishavaughan on Twitter

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