interface designs Crowdsourcing

Crowdsourcing is a user interface design mechanism that deals with the process of designing a technique allowing two or more components in a single system to communicate. It applies to hardware, software, and interface designs between home appliances and mobile devices, as well as any other device that relies on user experience.

Crowdsourcing refers to the requirement to obtain the necessary services, content, and ideas by soliciting contributions from a broad number of individuals, notably from the online community, rather than engaging specialists and traditional top talent to address the problem. Therefore, it is an online distribution problem solving and production model, which leverages on the intelligence of online communities collectively to serve specific goals of the organization.

The benefits of incorporating crowdsourcing in design project include innovativeness, mining exploration costs, and awarding the designer benefits. For instance, by including a number of clients in a number of operations such as marking, advertising, item improvement forums, the company directors can minimize the dangers associated with questionable commercial center interests as well as staffing expenses. As results, examinations costs reduce as the innovativeness of the designers expand.

When crowdsourcing technology is combined with interface design, there is open imagination to create a greater user experience with the designed interface. In this paper, I intend to look at the benefits, challenges, and limitations of incorporating crowdsourcing in a given project and evaluate the legal and ethical issues associated with crowdsourcing in project management.

Examine the invention and growth of crowdsourcing in the field of interface design.

Crowdsourcing is an evolving phenomenon in the field of information and communication technologies. Several researchers have recently begun to investigate the how the phenomenon is relevant in the field of the user interface. The use of crowdsourcing in the interface design has exponentially grown (Braham, 2010).

The principle behind the operation of crowdsourcing is to tap into the intelligence of the public collectively and complete the entire task related to the business that a company performs by itself or through outsourcing from the third party service provider. This implies that companies would effectively utilize the benefits of using outside sources to help them accomplish certain goals or criteria which the company can easily capitalize on. Crowdsourcing is different from outsourcing in a way that it utilizes the reserves that are found in the organization geographical location. Small businesses with budget constraints can use the idea of crowdsourcing in the interface design field to obtain the User Interface ideas at a small fraction of the costs.

The proliferation of crowdsourcing can be connected to the crosscutting edge of the internet. Designers are performing crowd-sourced work for different reasons namely, altruism, enjoyment, socialization, and altruism. Crowdsourcing is increasingly becoming more popular and has always been studied as an engineering methodology to tackle usability issues in interface designs with crowd sourced testing of usability through with one can tap the variety of users to first test an online application or website before validation (Afuah and Tucci, 2011).

Whereas crowdsourcing has achieved various strength alongside prior practices, some of the theoretical platforms are limited by numerous challenges. For instance, worker anonymity accompanied with lack of enough accountability and task dependence payment entices some of the designers to complete many tasks poorly. For instance, spammers may take a full advantage of the profits without considering the quality of work they intend to perform. Some questions might be answered wrongly hence creating risks on the validity of study results that are dependent on their answers. In contrast to traditional designs on user interface usability, crowdsourcing tasks are more complicated to complete. It is difficult for participants to cheat during task performance and the task in question may be done effectively. Crowdsourcing is always accompanied by low environmental validity. Usually, the experimenter has a less control on the settings in which the user at Amazon Mechanical Turk can carry out certain tasks.

Describe the impact that crowdsourcing has had on the field of interface design.

The greatest impact of crowdsourcing can be perceived as a couple of phases during the process of designing. It is applicable in user interface content, Unser interface research, and user interface testing. It has closed the gap between the novices and the expert specialists (Afuah and Tucci, 2011). The closeness between the customer and the virtual planner may include some significant pitfalls that the organization would commonly be required to pay for. The impact of crowdsourcing on the field of interface design has been both negative and positive.

Crowdsourcing operates as a technique of creating an evaluation of data for statistical machine translation system. For example with the mechanical Turk at Amazon, one can create a very big amount of bilingual data coups to establish a new statistical machine translation system in a Quicker and relatively cheaper way.

Analyze and discuss at least three (3) benefits of incorporating crowdsourcing into a design project.

The widest field of view for incorporating crowdsourcing in the design project entirely depends on the new idea that will be incorporated in the process of designs for purposes of fulfilling feasibly aspects when getting the tasks finished. Many experienced workers are skeptical in the tasks of crowdsourcing. However, the emerging personnel feels the need to interact with the process of designing in a different perspective that outfit sought during the process. There are various models established but later on, there might be new principles to old problems when creating a successful model for purposes of making some improvement. The benefits of using crowdsourcing include public participation, scalability, and fewer development costs.

For each design process, the cost is an essential element in meeting the project requirements once those costs have no financial constraints. The more the entities sought, the better the ideas at low cost, given the ability of the designer to interface with crowdsourcing in offering practical alternatives to complete the design of the project with various options available. Crowdsourcing enables companies to eliminate the system of putting workers on their payroll, pay their health benefits hence can reduce the design costs.

In traditional stages, the project may cost thousands of dollars before its commencement. Crowdsourcing has the ability to maintain the feasibility of the projects and allow forums such as internet forums in soliciting capable people in target markets with fewer costs associated with the project (Ross, 2009). Ultimately, the entire process involves non-monetary incentives after the work has successfully been completed. The option of applying crowdsourcing increases the need to abolish an infrastructure on overhead fees that would house the team of personnel in conducting the design work.

The connection between the individual groups and the company will be a single time event toward project accomplishment. As a result, a group or individuals will be given a way of self-promoting their competence to manage the project needs under the crowd source. Companies can search the internet looking for the best alternatives given the approach of capability with no transaction of noteworthy costs or logical constraints to contend with on a daily basis (Afuah and Tucci, 2011). The crowdsourcing global workforce has the capability to negotiate power and include prizes, pricing, and rewards that save the company from incurring at least 30% in cost. For instance, in crowdsourcing, the “crowd flower” address all the problems associated with outsourcing by delivering good quality and scalable work levels with the ability and flexibility to deliver the most appropriate deign in the market at the right time (Boudreau, Lacetera, and Lakhani, 2011).

Another benefit of incorporating crowdsourcing in a design project is related to a large number of participants involved. Using many participants increase the likelihood of obtaining an optimal solution as both effects are found in the data sets given. The nature of the problem in terms of uncertainty degree acts as a creator in a multidimensional problem which has the highest degree of uncertainty and benefits more from the use of many participants as well demonstrate less effect on the monetary incentives (Ross, 2009) .

Analyze and discuss at least three (3) challenges of incorporating crowdsourcing into a design project.

Different professionals have voiced their concerns about the incorporation of crowdsourcing in a given project. It closes the boundaries between professional and amateur design practices. Others suggest that it undermines the value of expertise design. By making the worker look easy to do, the value of design profession is devalued. The role of the user interface designer is to become an elite voice in a culture whose accomplishments are perceived to be complicated to do (Ross, 2009).

Crowdsourcing is perceived by most of the individuals in the design community as being a speculative work (Burger-Helmsmen, and Penin, 2010). In design settings, being a speculative work happens in two ways namely clients asking to view some work from the designer and see if they can like it before accepting the project or requesting a custom work during the request-for-proposal phase of the design process. In case the client appreciates the work, the designer will win the contract hence will be paid, If not the designer a never are paid. Therefore, the site is perceived speculative work since the designer has no formal contract with the business over which they are designing hence may not be paid for the final accomplished of the tasks (Blakeman, 2008). Secondly, crowdsourcing is associated with the difficulty of protecting designer from such clients who might not award them with winning the contract and later on use their design without compensating them. For instance, the client may reject the proposal and continually use the design ideas given to hiring cheaper designers. This implies that clients may continually use the crowdsourcing sites and retain the services of the designers yet they are not actually compensating them for their efforts. Crowdsourcing sites do very little to neither promote designers and elite in employing a flexible approach towards copyrights and licensing nor do they encourage content mixing. Given the difficulties associated with the authorship of the designs, it is so fascinating that most of the crowdsourcing sites retain reductionist and a static vision of authorship and depend on legal portions of the intellectual property (Burger-Helmsmen, and Penin, 2010).

In addition, the deign terms require individuals to assign project copyrights to the company for their designs including the rights to sue the company in case of infringement and the rights to obtain further licenses of the designs and ensure that the designers will not design a derivative work based on the existing innovations. At times companies may require designers to contact them to have the designs eliminated from the assistance in case they may wish to apply the design in doing something different once is not optional (Burger-Helmsmen, and Penin, 2010).

Propose a solution for generating interest in your design project from an online community.

The nature of interface designing and how it changes with crowdsourcing shows mixed results. The existence of online crowdsourcing sites may encourage individuals to feel the sense of empowerment when creating designs and feel they do not need to quit their work to experts. However, some platforms of crowdsourcing have difficulties related to design thinking from both ends. Sometimes the clients view the process as simple instead of creating a coproduction endeavor with the project designers. In addition, crowdsourcing sites create encourage designer to look for potential monetary gains and accept the challenge with little capability to work with the client and articulate the underlying need. However, the design community has not done much to provide an alternative option to such spaces for those individuals who have to develop their user interface design skills outside the traditional program of design. The following solutions can generate interest in design project from an online community (Boudreau, Lacetera, and Lakhani, 2011).

Instead of creating a top-down marketplace, it is better to create a bottom-up community. Whereas sites such as crowd spring may employ clients seeking for cheap salutations to design challenges, there is a likelihood that they can have deigned complications in maintaining a profession designer’s community with the willingness to work with them for a long hull. This implies that there is no need to get guidance from the expert designers hence the overall designs become less useful.

It is imperative to create a robust community of those individuals who critique works done by their fellows. Hence, it serves as a model for other sites dealing in crowdsourcing. Therefore, site designers can rethink their approach to collaboration and competition and the community can flourish in case collaborating is done implicitly or explicitly.

Secondly, it is imperative to educate potential creative designers about the process of designing. By doing so, it implies that there is a robust interaction between clients and designers instead of relying on a set of formal fields hence communication between them becomes easier. In addition, businesses are steered away from using crowd-sourced designs in case it does not meet their expectations. In case companies are serious in providing employment opportunities to designers and education to novice, designers across the globe, educating both parties about the need for good design results, form an in-depth thinking during the design process. Alternatively, one can create a payment system that moves crowdsourcing beyond the game of numbers. Clients are can be requested to pay designers a fair wage and engage them for work after viewing their personal portfolio. In such a way, clients are encouraged to better understand the outcomes and process, which they should expect when engaging designers and help them evaluate the nature of the designs, which they have received. Ultimately, clients can consider different options on how they can monetize the work done and perhaps shift to a position where they can be introduced to experienced designers for a particular fee (Boudreau, Lacetera, and Lakhani, 2011). Crowdsourcing companies would do well in encouraging communication between designers and clients and move beyond just identifying the problem, delivering the files hence the final product is improved, and it will yield long-term collaborative relationships between clients and designers (Braham, 2010).

Suggest a solution for evaluating the skill set and quality of the code submitted by potentially unknown users.

Given the fact that crowdsourcing is not likely to go away, the designing community must continually adjust to the changing reality in the marketplace. This paper suggests different solutions through which the skill set and quality of the code submitted by potentially unknown users can be evaluated. Designers should be encouraged to collaborate with each another and eliminate criticism despising one another. It is imperative to create spaces for inexperienced designers who may not have sufficient access to traditional programs in designs hence they can learn the basic tools of the trade as they are mentored by experienced designers. For instance, one can consider using classes and online tutorials that provide individuals with cheaper education.

In addition, crowdsourcing organizations should provide alternatives to the crowdsourcing sites in case they are concerned about encouraging and preserving the expertise of designs. There a likelihood that the number of novice designers shifting to non-existing crowdsourcing spaces has a wrong perception about few opportunities that can build their portfolio and skills in a given set of geographical, economic, and environmental constraints. To evaluate their skills and quality of the codes submitted, design associations must address realities in the marketplace and provide resources, tools, and both informal and formal opportunities in education to meet the early career designer needs.

Secondly, the public needs to be educated about the impacts and limitations of crowdsourcing. Evaluate the value of collaboration among the designers, how they can use research, brainstorming, and idealization to improve their work (Douglas, 2010). In addition, highlight the capability of designers to exploit the designer’s tendency to provide a bunch of ideas that are not redefined rather than taking viable and realistic solutions for their challenge in case they are not compensated for their work. Grounding the basis of the argument based on how the designer can be negatively impacted on the nature of work can help in humanizing and moving the discussions about crowdsourcing beyond social justice and ethics economics.

Describe how crowdsourcing may affect the budget and timeline of a design project.

Most of the crowdsourcing companies have a belief that the primary motivation as to why designers are participating in projects and contests is to gain all the design experience. However, money seems to be an important motivational factor for those individuals doing crowd sourced work (Burger-Helmsmen, and Penin, 2010). Even those who contribute the design to the companies are motivated by the potential of being paid for their innovation alongside improving their skills in designs and gaining freelancing work as well as feeling the need to participate in the community and gain freelancing work. Since many crowdsourcing designers are looking for the ways of making money, it is so critical to examine the impact of crowdsourcing on the project budget and timeline (Burger-Helmsmen, and Penin, 2010). Generally, the payments of the design work on many crowd-sourced sites are less than what a typical designer would earn on a comparable work. As result, the project budget must be designed in such a way that designers may earn per hours worked but distinguishing the amount earned according to the level of expertise.

Crowd sourced work affects the project budget in such a way that the nature of the work requires total compensation, which is more than the hourly wage otherwise designers may not win the project entered. In addition, crowd sourced work affects project timeline especially when payments are made on time rating. Designers are money oriented hence they would prefer to work on such design as they maximize their timely gains thus the project may overshoot the stipulated time for completion.

Assess crowdsourcing about the legal, societal, and ethical issues it raises, and suggest methods that alleviate these concerns.

Of all design sources, crowd sourced designs involve the highest number of risks associated with infringement of intellectual property rights because of having a large number of various contributors and complexities involved in clearance. Even if compensation or warranties concerning the origins of the work are guaranteed, they might be worthless the value of the designs. As a result, the company might end up obtaining a complete assignment of rights. Companies that use crowdsourcing must address the likeness and the names of the designers. Similarly, in case the company is concerned with the ownership of crowdsourcing projects, usually, crowd sourced designs are normally protected by copyright laws and involve additional constraints since they do not qualify to be used as the works made available for hire.

Contributors are not considered as employees under the United States copyrights laws hence the only way through which crowd sourced work can be made legible for hire is dependent on whether that work falls in one of the enumerated categories and when both parties have agreed that, the work is meant for hire. In case the designer is not considered for hire, there is a likelihood of termination of transfer claims that can cope up thus allowing the original designer to reclaim the authenticity of the work after a lawful period of time disregard of having assigned the work to the company. At times crowd-sourced contributor contracts are in form of electronic click-through agreements since much of crowdsourcing is performed online. Whereas courts uphold some of such agreements, they might need to address the validity of such contracts within the crowdsourcing context. In addition, crowdsourcing of projects have the challenge of insurance coverage in that, insurance may not cover the full extent or liability of potential damages for an infringement claim.

With crowdsourcing, designers are less transparent than how they could perform in deign thinking hence in the due course of designs they may abruptly undermine the perceived value. Consumers are exposed to the design only after the production of the final version of the product and are not given a chance to look at other alternatives such as research and design thinking. To address this issue, participation bearers can be removed by allowing no designers to emphasize the importance of critical literacy skills in form of design thinking.


Crowdsourcing is an evolving phenomenon in the field of information and communication technologies. In this study, I have explained the how the idea of crowdsourcing is changing the design work in terms of efficacy, intellectual property rights, compensation and the quality of the products produced. In terms of intellectual property, most of the crowdsourcing sites give more latitude towards the rights of the client other than those of designers. Most of the crowdsourcing sites focus on purchasing designs thus providing a limited way towards development and education of novice designers such that they become experts. Crowdsourcing and creative design sites are not ‘equal playing’ fields in terms of how they value the use of compensation and intellectual property. Crowdsourcing designs have been discovered to be more of favoring the requirements of that offering platform and the clients that use such platform rather than the designers who comes up with actual designs. This opposes the stated purpose of most of the companies, which suggests that they are providing opportunities for designers yet they are not connecting clients and designers effusively. Therefore, the work of designing should not only be left to experts but the crowdsourcing companies should look into how they can maximize the potentials of novice designers and also establish client-designer relationships such that their designs are not undermined by clients.


Andrew Ross, (2009). Nice work if you can get it: Life and labor in precarious times. New York: New York University Press.

Afuah, A., and C. Tucci, (2011): Crowdsourcing as the solution to distant search. Unpublished manuscript, EPFL, and University of Michigan

Burger-Helmsmen, T and Penin J, (2010). The limits of crowdsourcing inventive activities: What do transaction cost theory and the evolutionary theories of the firm teach us? Conference paper, Workshop on Open Source Innovation, Strasbourg, France.

Braham, D. (2010). Moving the crowd at Threadless. A Journal of Information, Communication, and Society 13(8): 1122-1145

Boudreau, K, Lacetera N, and Lakhani K. (2011). The Effects of Increasing Competition and uncertainty on Incentives and Extreme-Value Outcomes in Innovation Contests. Management Science.

Grant Blakeman, (2008) .“Why we don’t do free speculative work,” at, accessed 1 July 2012.

Steve Douglas, (2010). “Speculative work. 28 talking points,” Logo Factory Blog at, accessed 15 July 2012.

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