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Deval Delivala on Sketching user Experiences September 26, 2009

Posted by Deval Delivala in Sketching User Experiences.

He uses some good cases and examples to explain the importance of design in an organization. He states that design should be implemented in different phases of the product life cycle instead of separating it as a different function. I feel most companies get one part right and are too focused on either the design, product or marketing. Though I would have liked to see him write about what can be done to ensure that companies implement it. The author works for Microsoft and it doesn’t seem like Microsoft got all three stages right either.  Most design and innovation discussions always cite Apple and IDEO and so does he. I think these two companies are an exception to the rule. If the books on design thinking and the success of these two companies have been around for so long, what is taking companies so long to focus on design?

He makes some very strong claims in the book like “not everyone is a designer” and defends them well. He argues that though innovation in process may trump innovation in product, innovation in both can trump either. I don’t necessarily subscribe to that. I think even if you have a great product a poor process can fail you. Towards the end of the book he gives detailed explanations of how some people have built prototypes very easily in the past. I felt it was way to design focused for me even though he makes it sound simple. It will definitely help me understand others designs better but I don’t think I would be able to come up with the kind of prototypes he shows in the book.

Two great examples in the book

Experience Design vs. Interface design

He uses a very simple example of an orange juice maker to explain the difference between experience design and interface design. Even in two seemingly similar products there are minor modifications that can change the experience for the user. http://www.billbuxton.com/experienceDesign.pdf

The Wizard of Oz: I really liked the analogy.  He uses is it to explain how a good demo/prototype can accurately predict the users experience.

“Up to the point where Toto tipped over the screen and revealed the Wizard to be a fraud, all of Dorothy’s reactions were valid …To her the Wizard was real and therefore so were all her expectations”

Wizard of Oz and what it teaches us:

  • Fidelity of the experience is important
  • We can use anything we want to conjure up experience
  • The earlier we do it the more valuable it is
  • Fake it before you build it


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