After the move of Die Ergonomen Usability AG from Steinstrasse to Zurich-Oerlikon in November 2020 due to COVID-19 measures, the office-warming party was long overdue. On May 4th, 2023, Die Ergonomen invited guests to the official office and lab inauguration. The evening was filled with a laboratory demonstration, interactive posters, and a Lego challenge. The approximately 40 guests enjoyed a delightful Apéro Riche, providing a beautiful setting for the official inauguration!
Dr. Christopher H. Müller, founder, and owner of Ergonomen Usability AG opened the evening with a brief look back at the history of Ergonomen and the past of the office premises at Wallisellenstrasse 301. These rooms, with their approximately 4-meter height, were once used for the production of mechanical calculators starting in 1942. On some days, you can still catch a whiff of the machine oil and solder from the industrial past... There are also parallels between the precision machines of Precisa and the work of Ergonomen: quality and meticulous work also characterize our everyday life at Ergonomen.
Precisa-Büromaschinenfabrik on Wallisellenstrasse (ETH-Bibliothek Zürich, Bildarchiv/Stiftung Luftbild Schweiz / Fotograf: Swissair Photo AG / LBS_IN-051733-51)
In the laboratory experience, teams competed against each other, solving challenging usability tasks. Joel Siebenmann, UX and usability consultant at Ergonomen, moderated the challenges, allowing guests to experience firsthand the impact of different application concepts on the results. In the first challenge, participants had to independently search for "blue sneakers" in the online shops of Galaxus and Zara and add them to the shopping cart. The "Galaxus" team successfully completed this task first and was declared the winner. Another challenge involved finding a Point of Interest (POI) on both Apple Maps and Google Maps. Team Google Maps was the fastest and emerged victorious in this challenge. Finally, a joke question was posed: "What gets wet when drying?" The guessing game began between Team Google Search and Team ChatGPT, but surprisingly, Team Google Search provided the answer faster. The correct solution was the towel, which brought smiles and amusement to the guests.
Challenges in the Usability-Lab
After the work came the pleasure, and a lavish Apéro Riche was served. During the Apéro, guests had the opportunity to explore the 490 square meters of office and lab space and engage in discussions about various interactive wall posters on topics such as "Usable Food?", "Beerish Gestalt Laws," or the question of whether one is an "Android or iPhone type." Alongside the Apéro, our guests recreated their favorite movies with Lego - who guessed them all correctly? The Apéro Riche provided ample time for networking and chatting while indulging in delicious bites!
Apéro Riche with lots of food, drink, interactive posters and room for networking
The office inauguration was a fantastic celebration that offered a humorous glimpse into the world of usability testing. Our guests courageously embraced the usability challenges! The Apéro Riche not only provided a sumptuous buffet but also plenty of opportunities to connect and converse with clients, former colleagues, partners, and Ergonomen. A heartfelt thank you to our guests who made the evening so special.