A Book Apart

Preston So Voice Content and Usability

Don’t get left behind in this exciting new design frontier—give your content a voice.

Select an Option

Interfaces have long been visual affairs, with content confined to the text and images behind our screens. But that’s changing. Humans have started talking to interfaces—and interfaces are talking back.

Now we need to ensure those interfaces can converse effectively, thoughtfully, and naturally. Preston So introduces us to the exciting new frontier of voice content design, and the questions that designers, content strategists, and engineers need to answer in order to build richly structured, inclusive communication with the powerful medium of voice.

Topics Covered

  • Steps for preparing your existing content for voice interfaces
  • Frameworks for crafting effective dialogues
  • Effectively diagramming communication flows
  • How to consider accessibility, inclusivity, and editorial integrity in voice content design
  • Techniques for quality testing voice content

Preston So brings conversational systems to life with real-world Alexa Skill examples and practical advice for designers of voice interfaces. Learn how to transform web-based content into voice-based content, how to design conversational flow, and how to test before and after deployment. Highly recommended!

Michael McTear
Coauthor of The Conversational Interface and author of Conversational AI
Previous Next

I've always admired Preston’s ability to both fly high and dive into the weeds when needed. This book soars through the upper altitudes of understanding and planning for voice interfaces, while also peering deep into the intricacies of content and technical implementation—a full view of the future of spoken digital interactions and how we can design them to be fair and effective.

Nikhil Deshpande
Chief digital officer of the State of Georgia
Previous Next

This approachable, practical guide breaks down the complexities of creating and delivering voice content with tremendous grace and clarity. A must for anyone writing, designing, or building voice interfaces today.

Sara Wachter-Boettcher
Founder of Active Voice and author of Design for Real Life
Previous Next

Preston So’s Voice Content and Usability is a fascinating and invaluable guide to the peculiarities and potential of a platform we're only just beginning to understand. I, for one, would not want to work on a voice interface without it.

David Dylan Thomas
Host of The Cognitive Bias Podcast and author of Design for Cognitive Bias
Previous Next
Preston So

About the Author

Preston So (he/him) is a product architect and strategist, digital experience futurist, innovation lead, developer advocate, three-time SXSW speaker, and author of Gatsby: The Definitive Guide (O’Reilly, 2021) and Decoupled Drupal in Practice (Apress, 2018). He has been a programmer since 1999, a web developer and designer since 2001, a creative professional since 2004, and a content architect since 2007.

A product leader at Oracle, Preston has led product, design, engineering, and innovation teams since 2015 at Acquia, Time Inc., and Gatsby. Preston is an editor at A List Apart, columnist at CMSWire, contributor to Smashing Magazine, and has delivered keynotes around the world in three languages. Preston is based in New York City, where he can often be found immersing himself in languages that are endangered or underserved.

Product Details

  • ISBN: 978-1-952616-01-3
  • Paperback: 131 pages
  • Published: Jun 22, 2021