Hello — I'm Nick Healey

I've been designing award-winning, people-pleasing, industry-changing tech products for over 25 years.

It's just Product Design, in software (or "User Experience Design" if you wish): what the product should do and how, so that it does what users want, in ways they'll understand, like, even love.

Below, some examples of what I know, and what I've done. Some of these designs have changed industries, because they work first time, "out-of-the-box", for ordinary people.

Things I do

On any project I might do some combination of these:

  • User research
  • Workflows
  • UI Wireframes
  • Inventing and patenting

Sorry, but I don't do these:

  • Coding prototypes
  • Graphic Design

Things I know

Good User Research = better input

And behind any good survey lies great care:
— Have a Comments box for every question - provides all kinds of eye-opening input
— Fewer questions = better data. Lose questions if the answers won't change your project
— One misunderstanding can wreck it - find your best wordsmiths, and have dry-runs

Early Design = better Agile

Before you start coding features:
— Maximise your target user base
— Make workflows to cover their goals
— Do product-wide wireframes, just deep enough to show it'll all hang together
Otherwise — wrong features, rework coming?

Simple For Everyone = better sales

Most tech still gives normal users problems (you'll know, if you do user research):
— Techies like "fewest taps, fastest navigation"; users prefer obviousness
— Users want bombproof data and UI: they fear using Settings, in case they "break" something
So: "Looks Simple" is not "was simple to design"

What To Fix = better product

Which bugs stop you shipping? Who decides?
— Each user goal is a chain of screens and interactions, as strong as its weakest link
— Can your Agile Product Owner appreciate how a wording tweak may be a key fix?
— (At Apple, Product Designers, who "live in users' heads", decide)

Things I've done

 

UX Designer for Inamo, and its on-table interactive ordering experience, voted 'Best Restaurant in London' by Time Out readers

UX/Design Consultant to Flook, a location-explorer iPhone app, which won 'Best User Experience' at the Mobile Premier Awards, Barcelona. (It was also 'Staff Pick' on both the US and UK Apple store)

UX/Design Consultant to Zeebox, a TV-accompaniment iPad app, which Apple made their AppStore 'App of the Week'

Designer and Project Leader for PsiWin, a file manager & connectivity suite, which won 'Best UK Product' at Ziff-Davis Europe's "Software Excellence Awards"

Sole Software Designer (Product/UX) for Psion PDAs and for the original Symbian OS, a mobile platform so well-received that the world's mobile industry came together and made it the world smartphone standard for the next 10 years.

 

I've designed a huge range of apps, UIs, and devices over the years, for dozens of clients of all sizes.

Patent work: I wrote my first patent while still at Symbian. Since leaving there:
— I have filed two patent applications of my own, one hardware and one software — both patents were granted and both sold
— I've been contracted by two companies to help them with the patent creation process
— I've conducted half a dozen "prior art" research projects for a variety of law firms, mainly as the User Interface specialist at Hillebrand Consulting Engineers

Things people say

 

Danny Potter, founder of Inamo Restaurants:
"We believe Nick is one of the world's outstanding people when it comes to user interface design. If more people built user-friendly interfaces like Nick, then the world would be a simpler, easier and better place to live and work in."
Mark Gretton, CTO Crave Interactive & TomTom:
"At Crave we put diners in control of the food ordering process, and fundamental to that is a Tablet UX that's completely intuitive. Our user tests threw up a seemingly intractable design problem, but after half a day with Nick we had an elegant solution that our users loved."
Jane Sales, founder of Ambient Industries, creators of 'Flook':
"Nick has that unusual ability in an ex-techie (not that he'd thank you for reminding him of that) to understand how 'normal' people think. He was invaluable during the design phase of Flook, helping me to design a UI that the user never feels lost in, and that delights and pleases."
Charles Davies, CTO TomTom & Psion:
"Nick is one of those rare people who can design world-class software experiences and will change the mindset of software development teams he works with to design more from the user experience backwards."
Paul Sherwood, CEO Codethink & Teleca:
"Nick is the first person I turn to for guidance on user interaction design. He brings unique insight, and is superb at bridging the gap between users, designers and engineers."
Colly Myers, CEO 63336, Symbian:
"Nick is simply one of the world's best UI designers. Having honed his skills at Psion he has gone on to work on a wide range of products over many years, giving him wisdom as well as bone deep knowledge of design."

Info / Contact

If you've an interesting project and you're wondering if I might be of use, try me out for free - tell me about your project, then point me at some relevant product, spec or design and I'll write you a little review, free of charge (you won't even have to reply) -

 Email me 

 

FAQ

"This site looks a bit basic, like some template?"
Sure - to show "Things I Know" and "Things I've Done" I wanted content over form. But by all means imagine it has parallax scrolling, and videos of happy actors using tech, if you feel it helps.

"Why can't I check you out from your Social Media?"
I'd rather give you the above taster of "Things I Know" and "Things I've Done", and offer you the chance to try me out for free. Better than judging someone by (doubtless recycled) opinions on blogs and social media?