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About the Authors

About the Authors

Jakob Nielsen

Jakob Nielsen, PhD, is a principal of Nielsen Norman Group (NN/g). He is the founder of the “discount usability engineering” movement, which emphasizes fast and efficient methods for improving the quality of user interfaces. Nielsen, noted as “the world’s leading expert on Web usability” by U.S. News and World Report and “the next best thing to a true time machine” by USA Today, is the author of the best-selling book Designing Web Usability: The Practice of Simplicity (New Riders Publishing, 2000), which has sold more than a quarter of a million copies in 22 languages.

Nielsen’s other books include Usability Engineering (Morgan Kaufmann, 1993); with Robert L. Mack, Usability Inspection Methods (Wiley, 1994); Multimedia and Hypertext: The Internet and Beyond (Morgan Kaufmann, 1995); International User Interfaces (Wiley, 1996); with Marie Tahir, Homepage Usability: 50 Websites Deconstructed (New Riders Publishing, 2001); and with Hoa Loranger, Prioritizing Web Usability (New Riders Publishing, 2006). Nielsen’s Alertbox column on Web usability has been published on the Internet since 1995 and has about 200,000 readers at www.useit.com.

From 1994 to 1998, Nielsen was a Sun Microsystems Distinguished Engineer. His previous affiliations include Bell Communications Research, the Technical University of Denmark, and the IBM User Interface Institute. He has been awarded 79 U.S. patents, mainly on ways of making the Internet easier to use. Nielsen holds a PhD in human-computer interaction from the Technical University of Denmark.

Kara Pernice

Kara Pernice is the managing director at Nielsen Norman Group and heads the Company’s East Coast operations. The Wall Street Journal has called her “an intranet guru.”

Pernice has more than 18 years of experience evaluating usability and is well versed in the usability areas of collaboration, document management, multimedia, database design, print materials, and consumer-oriented products. She has done numerous studies on the effects of aging, accessibility, and low literacy. She has also designed products ranging from Web calendar applications to dictation devices for radiologists to server monitoring programs.

Before joining Nielsen Norman Group, Pernice established successful usability programs at Lotus Development, Iris Associates (an IBM subsidiary), and Interleaf. She managed the first user experience program for Lotus Notes, and after the first usability release, PC Magazine wrote, “If this were summer camp, Lotus Notes would walk away with the Most Improved Camper award.”

Since joining NN/g, Pernice has worked with clients in a variety of industries and has led many intercontinental research studies, generated design guidelines, and coauthored study reports. She has presented countless seminars and conference keynotes on Web and intranet design, usability research techniques, usability management, and the politics of usability.

With one usability method or another, Pernice has watched thousands of people using software and the Web over the years. She may be best known for practicing and championing usability videos as a tool for analyzing, presenting, and teaching about usability and design.

Pernice chaired the Usability Professionals’ Association 2000 and 2001 conferences and served as 2002 conference advisor.

Pernice holds an MBA from Northeastern University and a BA from Simmons College.

She lives in New York and Cape Cod with her zealous terrier, Columbo.

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