At long last, after many months of — well, let’s just call it “research” — Carrie, your intrepid guide to all things weird in the world of work, has resurfaced at “My Cool Job” to bring you an interview with Usability Tester and Web Designer Trent Faust.
I’ve known Trent since the 1980s, when David Lee Roth was the frontman for Van Halen, ATM cards and cellphones were new and exciting (and only us geeks had them), and our mothers all dressed us funny.
These days, Trent not only dresses himself, but in addition to his freelance work is a co-founder of the St. Pete Skeptics Society, which meets regularly in St. Petersburg, Florida to discuss claims of the paranormal, cutting edge science, and many other topics of interest to anyone with a skeptical view on things and a soft spot for pub grub. If you’d like to learn more, are in the area and would like to join a discussion, or simply wish to discover what ‘skeptics’ actually talk about, click on over to the Society’s website and find out!
Of course, none of the above is telling you much about what a “Usability Tester” actually does (and I’ve been wanting to find out myself, which is usually why I ask someone interesting like Trent to tell me all about his Cool Job)….so let’s all find out together, shall we?
1) When people ask you “what do you do?” how do you describe your job?
This reminds me of when I would get the stereotypical “what’s your major” question in college. I got tired of trying to explain “astrophysics” to people at parties or the chick cutting my hair, so I started just answering “English” to bring an end to that line of questioning.
It’s sometimes similar with my current occupation. Most of what I do is usability testing and troubleshooting for websites, though I also still do some web design as well. But most people have no idea what usability testing is (I’m looking at you Microsoft), and it’s often just easier to say that I do web design. I do have a background of several years in web design, and that allows me to (more…)