Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Resonance: a film about design strategy

My irritation with IDEO publications is that they all talk around process and never discuss in detail or reveal specific process techniques. What you end of paying for is an expensive piece of PR for IDEO. This film, Resonance (a film about design strategy) by innovation consultancy Continuum also "talks around" process but is still a great, short watch with a couple of quote gems:

"...a good design strategy is actionable, you look at it and you know what to do next, and sometimes the things that are called strategy end with the insights and not the ideas, and you don't know what to do with them, you read it and you say "that's really interesting, I understand my customer so much better now... now what?"

"an insight is a really good question and an idea is a really good answer"

"were trying to come up with something that you can't think of today, but tomorrow is obvious."

Resonance from Continuum on Vimeo.

One of the primary process used in uncovering peoples explicit and tacit needs is called contextual inquiry, it involves direct interviews as well as the observation of people in the natural, actual setting of their lives and work. There actually aren't very good resources about this online (Usability Net, Wikipedia) but a great (although not quick) read on the subject of contextual design is Contextual Design: Defining Customer-Centered Systems by Hugh Beyer & Karen Holtzblatt.