Don Norman: Designing For People

Nielsen Norman Group

How to make sure people can use your product & why perfection is bad (Interview with James Brandon, Inc.)

James Brandon, a contributing editor at Inc. magazine, produced two columns after interviewing me: "How to Make Sure Average People Can Use Your Product" and "One Word the Best Product Designers Never Use." (August 20, 2014 and August 22, 2014.)

"How to Make Sure Average People Can Use Your Product" discusses the importance of iterative design, especially doing simple, quick tests to guide the iterations.  Brandon summarizes the guidelines for doing this in five categories:

  1. Start by accepting that t here are no guarantees
  2. Find people who match your customer profile
  3. Find a good sample size
  4. Let people test at will
  5. Accept whatever results you might find.



"One Word the Best Product Designers Never Use" Discusses the quest for "perfect":

"If you are charged with designing a new product, keep in mind that the goal is usability, good design, functionality--usefulness. Striving for perfection in a world full of imperfections doesn't make sense."

My philosophy is to aim for "good enough." Do not aim for perfection: the perfect is a mythical concept, not only illusive but an ever-changing, impossible to reach, mythological goal. Worst, what might be perfect for one person is unlikely to be for another. But "Good enough"? What is good enough for one will be good enough for many. Does this set the bar too low? No, you still have to set standards for the meaning of "good enough." But it is like the Minimum Viable product: Get the result to the world quickly. Learn how well it does, then refine, improve, and re-release.

Read more: http://www.inc.com/john-brandon/one-word-the-best-product-designers-never-use.html#ixzz3BFaem8AE

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