Steve Tengler Talks Elevator UX and Promoting Empathy for Users

September 24th, 2013 by Cheryl Falk No comments »

Steve Tengler, Altia’s UX Director, is gearing up with UX Magazine to judge the “International Design for Experience Awards (DfE)”. In

Empathy for the user? Not if you're designing elevator controls!

Empathy for the user? Not if you’re designing elevator controls!

his latest article on, he forewarns nominees that he’s got a critical eye on the “Promoting Empathy for Users” category … especially if the nominated product is an elevator.

Read Steve’s funny and incredibly on point commentary here.

Then click here to nominate a great UX product, company or professional for the DfE Award!


Altia UX Director to Judge The International Design for Experience Awards

September 17th, 2013 by Cheryl Falk No comments »

UX Magazine announces The International Design for Experience Awards, a program that will recognize people and companies that have achieved success in the design of user- and customer-centered products and services. Altia’s own UX Director, Steve Tengler, will sit on the panel of judges along with a host of User Experience experts from academia and industry.

The awards program is community driven — and nominations are open to the public. Finalists will be selected based on how much support they receive from the community.

UX Magazine is seeking nominations for a large number of categories, including:

  • Academic Program
  • Accessibility
  • Adoption of Experience Strategy
  • Bottom Line Impact
  • Bridging Digital and Physical Experiences
  • Bringing Order to Big Data
  • Complete Customer Experience Ecosystem
  • Consumer Product
  • Cross-Platform Experience
  • Effective Agency Team
  • Effective In-House Team
  • Experience for Children
  • Experience that Makes a Difference
  • Foresight of User Needs
  • Innovative Research Technique
  • Interaction Design Innovation
  • Interactive Component of an Ad Campaign
  • Mobile Solution or Application
  • Promoting Empathy for Users
  • Public Sector Experience
  • Strategy to Execution
  • Union of Design and Engineering
  • Work Environment for Digital Practitioners – Agency
  • Work Environment for Digital Practitioners – In-House

Click here to nominate your team! The deadline for applications is December 15, 2013. Winners will be announced in January 2014. Sign up for email updates to be notified of important dates and new information about the program.


EE Times Article on Current Trends and the Future of HMI

September 13th, 2013 by Jason Williamson No comments »

Check out NXP’s perspective of the factors behind the current proliferation of embedded graphics — and likely future trends in HMIs.  The article touches on hardware capabilities, touch technologies, memory configurations and, of course, graphics code generators.

An interesting read from Ken Dwyer:


More UX Lessons from Hollywood – The Seth Rogen Edition

August 9th, 2013 by Cheryl Falk No comments »

Steve Tengler has been entertaining and informing us about some critical lessons in user experience over the last several months. You may recall Steve’s insights based on characters played by Tom Cruise, Johnny Depp, Tom Hanks, Laura Dern and Jim Carrey. Perhaps you’ve even watched Steve present those insights live at Refresh Chicago just a short time ago.

Steve Tengler and UX Magazine just published another five User Experience Lessons from Hollywood. This time, inspiration arrived via the television and film characters portrayed by Canadian-turned-Hollywoodian, Seth Rogen.

What do characters from The Green Hornet, Horton Hears a Who!, Kung Fu Panda 2, Knocked Up and The Simpsons have to teach us about UX? Read Steve’s article to find out.

Stay tuned to Altia’s blog — because you never know when or where Steve will find his next inspiration! We’ll make sure to keep you posted on the latest!




Go ahead. Grab a pixel!

July 29th, 2013 by Cheryl Falk No comments »

We loved this TED Talk from Jinha Lee — especially the exciting technologies that he demonstrated. The user interface is the location where the user meets the product, but is also fast becoming the space where the user and the product converge into one.



Display Screens are Everywhere … Officially.

July 23rd, 2013 by Mike Juran No comments »

I just returned from a business trip to Japan.

As you would expect, the technology there is plentiful and cutting edge. What was even more interesting to me was that I found display screens everywhere I went. I encountered displays in all of the typical places — vending machines, trains, planes, cars, cameras, restaurants, elevators – as anyone would expect in the heart of Tokyo.

But even I was surprised when I headed to Kyoto for a restful weekend at a traditional Japanese hotel (ryokan). I removed my shoes, put on my kimono, opened the sliding door made of paper and bamboo and entered the sparse room with a pad on the floor posing as a “bed”. So far, so good.

Then I entered the bathroom. I realize the Japanese are obsessed with the high tech toilet, but even this through me for a loop.

It’s official. Display screens are everywhere!

Japanese Bathroom Display Screen Japanese Toilet Controls

Here’s why I love Altia Design 11…

July 1st, 2013 by Mike Yeakley No comments »

Although Altia just released our new GUI editor, Altia Design 11, as a company insider I have been able to use the new release for quite a while. And I LOVE it.

Why you ask? Here’s just a few reasons.

  1. The dockable / movable panes (navigator, control code editor, etc.) enable me to customize my HMI development environment for maximum productivity.
  2. The new control code editor is a huge leap forward for creating control code, debugging it in place, troubleshooting issues for designs that I didn’t create, etc.
  3. The accessibility that the new code generation dialog brings with respect to target documentation is excellent. I can access an installed target’s release notes and overview documentation directly. This saves me time from having to wade through the start menu and finding docs buried 3-5 levels deep, especially when you have umpteen different targets installed. Woot!
  4. Speaking of code generation, I can now set the canvas size in the editor. What this allows me to do is to avoid having to manually select items or manually change the size of the editor window to match a desired target screen size. Double woot! Avoiding manual steps equals awesomeness because it means less room for human error and makes builds easily reproducible across different developer / designer / customer PCs.
  5. Overall, the controls and tools needed to create a new HMI from scratch are far more intuitive than previous versions of the editor. This new tool enables me to wade in to customer’s designs and not have to worry about accidentally screwing something up because the editor does something in an opaque or non-obvious way (like using the wrong deck object, etc.).

Ultimately, I am loving Altia Design 11 because it saves me time. Saving time means I can get more done, faster.

All these things make me a happy user!




Video: 25 Lessons for User Experience from Hollywood

June 11th, 2013 by Cheryl Falk No comments »

User Experience (UX) can be a complex subject. Our Director of UX, Steve Tengler, is skilled at cutting through the complexity to explain how UX lessons abound.

What better way to explain complicated concepts than with a little fun? 

Steve Tengler entertains the members of Refresh Chicago in this hour-long video using the most entertaining of backdrops:  Hollywood. (Remember the UX lessons from the works of Tom Cruise, Johnny Depp, Tom Hanks, Laura Dern and Jim Carrey?)

Refresh Chicago Event - 2013

Watch these lessons come to life as Steve Tengler presents them here:



Altia Design and DeepScreen Now Support Green Hills Software INTERGRITY RTOS and Virtualization Platform

June 7th, 2013 by Cheryl Falk No comments »

Check out the news from Green Hills Software at Telematics Update in Novi, Michigan this week!

Green Hills Software Expands GUI Builder Support for INTEGRITY RTOS with Altia Design and DeepScreen:  Combination Delivers Advanced HMI Design Capabilities for Industry’s Leading, Independently Certified Operating System

“Green Hills Software, the largest independent vendor of embedded software solutions, and Altia Incorporated, a leading provider of user interface design and development tools, today announced the availability of the latest release of Altia’s graphical user interface development suite — Altia Design and DeepScreen code generator — for the Green Hills safe and secure INTEGRITY® real-time operating system and the INTEGRITY Multivisor™ virtualization platform.

This combination allows customers to quickly and successfully implement and market products with sophisticated graphical user interfaces (GUIs) with the ability to execute on an operating system platform that delivers deployment-proven system reliability and availability. This solution  targets customers in the automotive, industrial, home automation, medical, consumer electronics and defense industries.”

To read the Green Hills Software press release in its entirety, click here. For more about Altia’s support of GHS INTEGRITY RTOS, email


Free Webinar: See Altia in Action

May 16th, 2013 by Jason Williamson No comments »

It’s one thing to hear or read about how something works.  It’s quite another to watch a model materialize before your eyes.

Altia and IAR are hosting a webinar to give you a sneak peek at Altia’s GUI builder (Altia Design) and IAR’s UML state machine tool (visualSTATE).  We will explore the creation and interaction of models from both the GUI and logic side.  We will also touch on code generation, verification, validation, testing and more.  And, of course, there will be plenty of opportunity for Q&A.

Join us on Thursday, May 23 at Noon EDT (9:00 AM PDT). Sign up here:

Space is limited, so sign up soon!