I call myself an information architect.Some might call what I do UX design. http://www.flickr.com/photos/kwdesigns/734124559/
Elements of user experience Usability Desirability Adoptability Value
Different products, different priorities Social Onlinenetworks Usability Desirability dating EnterpriseGames Adoptability Value software
What I do Clients/projects• Solve business • Healthcare problems • Financial services• Meet • Real estate user/customer • Nonprofits needs • Arts • Education • Technology
Another thing I do • Mike Subelsky founded BIG & was my first improv teacher • Mike’s zen koan: If you don’t fail at least once each rehearsal, you haven’t tried hard enough.
“Fail big, fail often”• Perform at Chicago Improv Festival & others• Found, direct, perform in Baltimore troupes• Produce Baltimore Improv Festival first 5 years• Write, perform in Stoop Storytelling live radio shows• Produce/direct/write/perform in Vauxhall: Postmodern Vaudeville for Baltimore• Not the best improviser, my strengths are more meta--directing, big picture, producing, audience experience
Improv in my work life• more playful,• more willing to try new things• better at brainstorming• empathy• listening• accept circumstances• kill my darlings• better client interaction• better team collaboration
What is improv? “Strictly speaking, improvisation is making it up as you go along.” Del Close & Charna Halpern Truth in Comedy
Play = agreementestablish what/who/whereagree on premiseaccept all offers http://www.flickr.com/photos/chrissuderman/858914782/
Viola Spolin on play • “Were they acting? Get them to play.” • Improvise choices onstage, just as in life. • Players freed to create new opportunities so rules of play are fulfilled. • Son Paul Sills founding director of Second City.
Game: conducted story http://www.flickr.com/photos/glasgowamateur/7705117134/
Sound familiar?User experience (UX) work also includes:• Accepting (requirements, constraints)• Listening (to the market, to the client)• Paying attention to the group (your team)You each contribute to building somethingfor the user.
Similarities Audience Users/customershttp://www.flickr.com/photos/apollonia666/391357963/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/photocapy/5628703464/ • Vital to the improviser • Vital to the UX person • Best improv shows are • Best products are for the audience, not designed with actual improvisers use in mind • No viable show without • No viable product an audience without a user/customer
Collaboration in improv• “Hit the ball back” • Listen to scene• Accept the partners who/what/where • Everyone has a part, circumstances even if supporting• Add something of • Patterns emerge as value to keep story the improvised moving “game” of a scene
Collaboration in UX• Agree on premise, • User testing is constraints (who, collaboration with what, where) customers• “And” add • Common goals & strategy lead to something of value better product for users/customers, • When in doubt, test clients it out
The best collaboration• Free of judgment (Spolin)• Failure is encouraged (Subelsky)• Inhibitions are shed• Heightening of goals• Making your partner look good makes the team look great (Mick Napier)• Reduces belly fat (Tina Fey)
What if you don’t like the idea? Yes Accept you can’t change the offer given you. and… TRUST that hitting the ball back will end up a worthwhile game.
Game reprise: Imaginary product http://www.flickr.com/photos/glasgowamateur/7705117134/