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LEARNING LEAN:
USING FLASH BUILDS TO
LEARN FROM YOUR USERS
10 September 2015
Alex Humphreys, JSTOR Labs
@abhumphreys
PSP S...
JSTOR is a not-for-profit
digital library of academic
journals, books, and primary
sources.
Ithaka S+R is a not-for-profit...
At JSTOR Labs, we have one goal: to shape the future of
research and teaching, one project at a time. Working
with partner...
CASE STUDY #1:
JSTOR SNAP
ONE WEEK IN ANN ARBOR…
vimeo.com/120185616
THE FINISHED PROTOTYPE
labs.jstor.org/snap
CASE STUDY #2:
UNDERSTANDING
SHAKESPEARE
PARTNERSHIP W/ FOLGER
Folger Shakespeare Library
• Folger Digital Texts
• Shakespeare Quarterly
• Scholars and students
Ob...
THE FINISHED PROTOTYPE
labs.jstor.org/shakespeare
HOW WE DO IT
WHAT WE HAVE
• A small, diverse team
with technical, design and
business skills
• A space to innovate:
• Flexible technolo...
Prior to the Flash Build
1. User interviews
2. Create the data & infrastructure
During the Flash Build
3. Design jam
4. Pa...
WHAT YOUR USERS
CAN’T TELL YOU
1. Here’s what I actually do.
2. Here’s what you should build.
WHAT YOUR USERS
CAN TELL YOU
1. Here are my goals.
2. What keeps me from achieving my
goals is ….
3. Ohmigod, I love it!
THANK YOU
Alex Humphreys
Director, JSTOR Labs
ITHAKA
http://labs.jstor.org
@abhumphreys
alex.humphreys@ithaka.org
Further ...
APPENDIX
(OPEN IN CASE OF
NO INTERNET CONNECTION)
Learning Lean: Using Flash Builds to Learn from Your Users
Learning Lean: Using Flash Builds to Learn from Your Users
Learning Lean: Using Flash Builds to Learn from Your Users
Learning Lean: Using Flash Builds to Learn from Your Users
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Learning Lean: Using Flash Builds to Learn from Your Users

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The JSTOR Labs team has been using Flash Builds – high-intensity, short-burst, user-driven development efforts – in order to prototype new ideas and get to a user saying “Wow” in as little as a week. In this talk, I’ll describe how we’ve done this. I’ll use two case studies to illustrate the importance of getting user input throughout the process, highlighting what your users can tell you – and what they can’t.

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Learning Lean: Using Flash Builds to Learn from Your Users

  1. 1. LEARNING LEAN: USING FLASH BUILDS TO LEARN FROM YOUR USERS 10 September 2015 Alex Humphreys, JSTOR Labs @abhumphreys PSP Seminar: Knowing and Understanding the User
  2. 2. JSTOR is a not-for-profit digital library of academic journals, books, and primary sources. Ithaka S+R is a not-for-profit research and consulting service that helps academic, cultural, and publishing communities thrive in the digital environment. Portico is a not-for-profit preservation service for digital publications, including electronic journals, books, and historical collections. ITHAKA is a not-for-profit organization that helps the academic community use digital technologies to preserve the scholarly record and to advance research and teaching in sustainable ways.
  3. 3. At JSTOR Labs, we have one goal: to shape the future of research and teaching, one project at a time. Working with partner publishers, libraries and labs, we aim to create tools for researchers, teachers and students that are immediately useful – and a little bit magical.
  4. 4. CASE STUDY #1: JSTOR SNAP
  5. 5. ONE WEEK IN ANN ARBOR… vimeo.com/120185616
  6. 6. THE FINISHED PROTOTYPE labs.jstor.org/snap
  7. 7. CASE STUDY #2: UNDERSTANDING SHAKESPEARE
  8. 8. PARTNERSHIP W/ FOLGER Folger Shakespeare Library • Folger Digital Texts • Shakespeare Quarterly • Scholars and students Objective: demonstrate the value of Folger Digital Texts to scholars and students and demonstrate how it can be cross-referenced with Shakespeare Quarterly. JSTOR • The full archive run of SQ • 2000+ other journals • A newly-formed Labs team Objective: validate the value of using a primary text as a portal into secondary literature.
  9. 9. THE FINISHED PROTOTYPE labs.jstor.org/shakespeare
  10. 10. HOW WE DO IT
  11. 11. WHAT WE HAVE • A small, diverse team with technical, design and business skills • A space to innovate: • Flexible technology that allows for componentization and continuous deployment • A safe-space to fail • Ability to focus
  12. 12. Prior to the Flash Build 1. User interviews 2. Create the data & infrastructure During the Flash Build 3. Design jam 4. Paper prototypes 5. Low-fi prototypes 6. Working site After the Flash Build 7. Polish & clean up 8. Release & measure WHAT WE LEARN, WHEN User Input! Who are they? What can we do that will help them? How can we make our implementation even better? How should we implement it? How’d we do?
  13. 13. WHAT YOUR USERS CAN’T TELL YOU
  14. 14. 1. Here’s what I actually do.
  15. 15. 2. Here’s what you should build.
  16. 16. WHAT YOUR USERS CAN TELL YOU
  17. 17. 1. Here are my goals.
  18. 18. 2. What keeps me from achieving my goals is ….
  19. 19. 3. Ohmigod, I love it!
  20. 20. THANK YOU Alex Humphreys Director, JSTOR Labs ITHAKA http://labs.jstor.org @abhumphreys alex.humphreys@ithaka.org Further Reading • The Lean Startup, Eric Ries • Business Model Generation, Osterwalder & Pigneur • Marty Cagan’s Blog: http://svpg.com/articles/ • UX for Lean Startups, Laura Klein
  21. 21. APPENDIX (OPEN IN CASE OF NO INTERNET CONNECTION)

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