The Blue Dog Scientific Blog: Sharing is Cariing: UI and UX of Posting on Carii.

Sharing is Cariing: UI and UX of Posting on Carii.

Carii UX and UI.
Following on from a thread started in my earlier post "A Solution to the Problems with LinkedIn Groups" and continued in "What's Involved with Creating A Community on Carii?", I've since been looking into Carii Communities a little bit more deeply. In particular, I've started assessing the user experience (UX) and interfaces (UI), with a focus on how easy managing a Community might be.
Carii UX and UI
More on the Carii User Experience and Use Interfaces.

One  point which deserves a special mention, here at the outset, is the excellent degree of responsiveness and customer service provided by the Carii platform owners whenever I've reported issues or suggested improvements. On this score, the Carii UX is in a different Universe to LinkedIn!

So in this follow-on post, let's look at the UX and UI of Community posting on the Carii platform.

posting on Carii
Four types of posts on Carii.
Now, there are four different types of posts on Carii: News, Events, Photos and Dialogue. I will concentrate on News here, but we will look at the others in the next article in what is becoming a series (the difference between News and Dialogue is that the former is a post shared at the Community level, while the latter is a share at the people level).

Here's what the News posting dialogue box looks like on Carii (after I've filled it in).
News post
Note the two images I've uploaded - we'll come back to that below. Note also that I can select not only which Community I'm posting to, but I can simultaneously share it with other Communities. One of the features that Carii promote is their concept of affiliated Communities. I have already "affiliated" my Community with a couple of others - and here's one of the big differences to LinkedIn Groups.

If we share posts to multiple LinkedIn Groups, we simply create multiple separate Discussions. Comments are not associated with the post, but with the Group. On Carii, posts can be shared amongst affiliated Communities and it remains a single post. So everyone in these different groups can comment, see the comments of others and can interact on the same post, but from within their own group. I think this post level interaction idea is neat and will lead to much better engagement.

Filling in the posting form was quite straightforward and intuitive - I didn't need to read any instructions. However one small gripe I have is that it seems to take ages (as these things go) from pressing "Post" to something happening and the post being posted. It wasn't obvious that anything was happening at all, but a careful examination showed a faint progress bar at the top of the page... which seemed slow in this age where we are used to something happening instantly when we press buttons.This made it feel a little "clunky".

 Next is a screenshot how the post appears in the Community stream,
Carii newsfeed
News post in the Carii newsfeed.
and here's what it looked like when I clicked on the "read more" to open up the post.
Carii news post
A Carii News post.

Here's something else which I like - the uploaded pictures appear as on what Carii call a "carousel" system at the top of the post - multiple images can be uploaded and viewed like a slideshow. Actually, not just images, but multiple media can be uploaded to a News post in any chosen order. I think there is something quite powerful in this idea. Indeed, I see some possibilities in this facility for using Carii for online courses.

The post has the usual share buttons - I tried all these and they all worked fine. I was slightly disappointed that Pinterest has been overlooked. The link in the post also worked fine.
Comment on Carii post
The body of the post and a comment.
In summary, apart from a few niggles, the Carii UI and UX is pretty good, simple, familiar and intuitive.

Well, that was where I intended to end this post. But I was quite surprised to get a comment on my Carii News post almost straight away. I was delighted when I read this, as it was a thoughtful reply by none other than the CEO of Carii herself! Now that's what I call Customer Engagement! Indeed, I was so impressed with +Denise Hayman-Loa's interaction, I've decided to include her comment below. In fact, I think that gives us the direction we will explore next time.

"Gary - This is a very relevant topic. The need for a good solution for Business Networking is a high priority. Business networking groups that meet physically also need a platform for RSVP'ing for events, previewing who is attending and the ability for private or group follow-ups. So often networking meetings don't produce the hoped for results - how often have people gone to an event, exchanged numerous business cards, and had little to no follow-up. It seems to happen a lot, often because the only follow-up is through retaining that business card and sending an email. And life gets in the way and those cards just pile up....even with the best of intentions."

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