Test how bulletproof your UI/UX is by using language and a friend

I’m not a designer, my background is software. I started with programming robots, and later moved to mobile/web apps, and that gave me the honor to work with designers that are 1000x better than me. I think I learned some things from them.

I’m currently looking for a house in Norway, and although I can read some Norwegian(due to a combination of languages I know a little of, such as Portuguese, Italian, German, English, and Dutch), but with Norwegian I’m really really bad.

I came across this site: finn.no, and I wanted to see if I could use it without translating it.

Do you understand?

It didn’t go super well, but I imagined a couple of ways that it could be improved, a few well designed and well placed icons could have made it possible for me to understand everything. So I fixed it:

Is this better?

Someone asked me if this wasn’t a problem only I faced, due to a Norwegian housing site being targetted at, you know, Norwegians that speak Norwegian.

So I did some research. The city gets a lot of students that plan to stay 6 months to 2 years, due to Erasmus and other studies. This isn’t enough time to Learn Norwegian!

15.5% of the population of the city is not a native Norwegian speaker.

So no! I believe these few icons that took 5 minutes for me to add would make a serious difference in the ease of searching for a house/apartment in Bergen.

I’ve tried it myself! But translations from Norwegian to English are mediocre at best, some things are very, very lost in translation.

TL;DR; Use your site in a language you don’t understand, or even better, get a friend(not necessarily a co-worker) that doesn’t know the UI to use it in a language they don’t understand!

Please let me know how I can improve this post! I’m very open to feedback, so if you didn’t clap or didn’t understand, please let me know why. Thanks! I will share the names/usernames of everyone that helps me.

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Strong opinions, loosely held.

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