Setting the Stage
Design Thinking employs many techniques that help us understand people. A surprisingly large amount of ways to see things differently based on psychology and social sciences (associative by nature). Today, we’ll briefly review and recap some of these concepts and examine their use and efficacy.
Design Process: A Simplification
Concepts and Definition
- The act of discovering people’s explicit and implicit needs so that you can create appropriate solutions
- the rigorous study of the routine daily lives of a group of people
- A physical, psychological or cultural requirement of an individual or group of individuals. Something missing.
- An object, action or process that satisfies a need.
Seeing the world in a Different Way
- There’s a difference between an active observer and a passive participant. We can observe any setting where people who (by playing different roles) create an experience, perform a task, deliver a service or solve a problem.
- IRB: any publicly observable spot for informational purposes only: no personal identifiers allowed (names)
- Focus Groups
- In Store Observations
- At Home Interviews
- Activity Observations
- Moccasins Exercises
- a cultural activity where cinema art, humanities and information technologies interact to receive and include in social practice visual information on ethnic traditions to perform a dialogue of cultures - Moscow Univ. (CVA).
- research tactic that uses visual media to aid interpretations of cultural behavior - Designer’s Research Manual
- a field exercise in which subjects are asked to record their daily experiences with still or video cameras
- any film which seeks to reveal one society to another
- Needs vs Solutions
- Wrong: "she needs a ladder:
- Right: "she needs to get something on a high shelf"
- Explicit vs. Implicit
- Go beyond just what is overtly stated.
- “How are you?” / “I’m fine”
Toolkits and Techniques
- Rick Robinson developed framework (E-Lab founder)
- What are the actions and behaviors that you can observe taking place? These can be step details or overall descriptions (filling the car up with gas OR unscrewing cap, placing cap on top of trunk etc.)
- Describing the venues or overall setting that you’re in can help to provide useful context
- Record basic interactions between the people you see, between people and objects, and even between objects. Provide a timeline to help order those interactions.
- What are all the objects that you see? This may include both natural objects and man-made artifacts. Use this list as a jumping off point to describe particular objects in greater detail.
- As a designer, you may start to see some basic patterns in what exists, where and why. The entire discipline of material culture concerns itself with using descriptions of objects to interpret the values, behaviors and meaning structures of the people who use them.
- Who are the people that you see in your observation? What are their names, job titles? The role they play in the community or social network? (e.g., fireman, sister, bully)
Powers of Ten
- Analysis and Observation Technique based on Charles and Ray Eames
- Unpacking complex issues that play out at multiple scales
- What is the bigger issue? Think of your bug as a symptom
Figure & Ground
- Determine your frame of observation
- what’s in the frame
- what’s out
- what’s important
- what isn’t
- the work to be accomplished
- access to the use
- stories created to make sense of an experience
A way to create new utility and usability is to find un-utilized meaning
Design makes use, usability and meaning tangible
Design is the most fundamental way a company communicates with its customers