UX and UI are not interchangeable terms, or even adjacent disciplines. Those of you who use "UX/UI" to describe your role, is it just that you're a hybrid/unicorn, or do you not know the difference?

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Op,
So you think ui designers don’t know how to translate strategy into product? Also all ui designers do is design the look of a specific touch point? That makes it sounds like ux designers are the brains and all we do is color things in. I also think ui/ux designers are more than capable of doing the strategy as well.

likesmartupliftinghelpful

I identify as a UI / UX Designer... I am designing and creating experiences. If you are a Product Designer you encompass both.

likeuplifting

UX = Translating strategy into a product. UI = Designing an interface for a specific touchpoint.

They're absolutely not the same. They're about as similar as visual design and front-end development - related, perhaps, but any digital practice that has achieved any meaningful amount of maturity will hire them as separate roles.

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I’m guessing you are a pure UX person, or at least you have the myopic world view of one. I’ve found that people who think UX is a deep discipline have very shallow understanding of actual experience but deep love for rules and think rules are experience. Mark my words, UX as a singular sellable property is over the maturity curve and well into the commoditized space. In 3 maybe 5 years only way way way lagging companies (read nearly dead) will be willing to pay for pure UX and most will be offshoring that for pennies on the dollar. Pivot while you still can my friend. Broaden your T base to understand users on a human, not rules, level... that includes UI and non traditional storytelling.

likesmarthelpfulfunny

I don’t describe my role as that but yes I do both. Plus prototyping, research and strategy at times. Single discipline is a luxury at most places. And yes I’m a good visual designer too as well as ten years in UX

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Four order of designs? You think UI is just a poster and a bit of toaster? You think there’s no system in what they design or effect societies? That seems insulting to all forms of design.

likesmart

To me the UI is part of the UX. I'd rather people be specific about what they do in UX (like UXA, UX strategy, etc) than try to appeal to broader ignorance around what "ux/ui" means.

likefunny

Yes. But you can 100% be hybrid. Very common.

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I find it rare meet a UI designer that is very experienced in all UX stages of a large project, which may include stats review, quant/qual research, MVP definition, prototype, testing func spec etc. I think that may have to do with working in a larger agency and having specialists.

The discrepancies are highlighted when you’re hiring, and it’s awkward when you find a UX/UI designer that obviously focuses much more on the latter. I swear some recruiters just tell them to sprinkle UX in their CV 🙄

I think it also depends on how different agencies use certain titles. Obviously when recruiting, you have to look at previous experience, and if there’s no info on the thought/research/testing process, then I don’t get them in for an interview.

likesmart

DD1 - yes - I agree - good design is integral to a great UX experience.

I think this becomes a definition debate, which is quite subjective to organisations. If I saw “UX/UI designer”, I would expect a UI designer who was on the UX spectrum (or vice versa), and had experience in some kind of testing/prototypes/workshops etc. Otherwise I would use “UI or digital designer”.

likesmart

Lordy. It’s 2019. We are still having this debate?

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They’re not interchangeable, but saying they aren’t adjacent seems excessive.

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My experience says otherwise, DD1. *some* can, but the visual designers I’ve met are more focused on what is essentially brand and communication design, or digital product design... but not on the strategic part of it - namely who are we solving for, and what is the business impact of the work.

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It can completely depend on the size of the organization. It makes complete sense to have separate UI and UX teams when you’re working in large scale Product team. The incentives are different if you’re at a start up.

There are plenty of reasons, including the incredibly high failure rate, not to adopt startup conventions. But there is also never one way to organize anything.

People don’t label themselves UX/UI Designers because that makes the work better, they do it because the marketplace and some of the tools incentivize that title. But doing two jobs for the price of one can hardly be seen as a triumph. And my sense is that it’s one of the reasons products look so similar today.

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DD1 True. All good designers understand actual good design... in print, in digital, in a space, in a product, in nature, in systems... Some specialized UX people are good designers and can see and some keep their head down and think that rules, software and current form factors are the solution vs A solution. On the visual side, we’ve all seen people who are wizards at Adobe CC who can ride a trend or come up with one off fun tricks, but can never quite actually solve a human problem and where are those people today? This is the same as a specialized UX person. Without an epiphany of what UX is actually about (good design) or realizing UX wasn’t invented with the advent of common computers or the iPhone or your favorite app, they’ll simply burn off. Design is a living eco system that benefits from the creation and folding in of forms and functions. This thread is a beautiful example of not seeing the forest for the trees.

likesmart

They’re pretty interchangeable. What’s your reason they’re not?

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UXL1 - The same can be said about how ux designer claim they know how to do graphic design. I just can’t understand how you can do ux without basic design principles. Design is ux teaching users where to click and guide them through experiences. Those foundations come from layouts, colors, and messaging.

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Kind of you to make assumptions about my background and professional experience.

I don’t think anyone should be “entrenched” anything. I started out doing UX before moving into more design strategy land. My point is only that UX and UI are two different but adjacent disciplines, and when people say UX/UI, they’re typically confounding them as actually the same thing. “Good design” from a UX perspective is a Venn diagram to “good design” from a UI perspective. I wouldn’t expect a UI person to focus on information architecture, or a UX person to focus on typography or brand. People can cut across both, but it’s rare that people tackle them both to the same depth.

Ok, now back to your ad hominem attacks on consultancies 😊.

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