GDE740 - Week 11

Week 11 – Research

This week we’re focussing on continuing our final outsome for the Industry Set brief, this time garnering feedback and thoughts from the targetted audience. It’s been really interesting going back through all we’ve learnt from the interviews so far and how they plan for and utilise critical feedback to improve their projects.

Torsten, as with all the others, likes feedback – it’s vital, it’s important and, although it hurts on a personal level, it’s showing that something along the way wasn’t right or didn’t quite go to plan. It’s not that you’re wrong or what you’ve done is bad, it’s just necessary to change the course of the project slightly. He mentioned that we need to get used to feedback and need to take it seriously – it’ll be a strong feature through everything we do and we need to start seeking it out. More often than not it’s a chance to slightly amend the projection of this task and make it better!

Matthew had a slightly different stance, in that they work alongside the client from the very beginning, so with them integrated in the work, they always make iterations or changes throughout and it’s not a specific “stage” of the project. I’ve noticed with this project in particular, the course leaders have encouraged us to continuously seek feedback from the audience. With feedback coming in little stages, your project will never go off course with little nudges along the way. I really love his outlook and views on integration and working with the client from the start – this is by far my preferred method of working, I love making a prototype and then putting it infront of someone as to how it might need amending to be better. This makes for a stronger designer and takes away from that “stage” of getting feedback and being massively knocked back!

Wouter looked at it as two separate feedback stages – one from the client and one from the audience. 2 very different processes. The client’s feedback is constant and from the start. They have this continuous form of communication, going through all the points with the client, again, this results in a stronger project at the end. His analogy with the police identity and the complaints from the prisoners was great and really showed how a change in identity or branding can really piss people off!!! We’ve seen this so often before and so, as he states, perhaps just shrug it off sometimes if you feel you’ve done the right thing!! – I’ve had to take this into account with the feedback we get from our course mates, sometimes is amazing and really critical so we can focus our project in that direction, it’s so useful and helpful to get good honest feedback. But sometimes, some people just prefer to sit behind a keyboard and this can get quite dangerous – I have learnt to take some feedback with a pince of salt sometimes, as, if you always follow their advice, your project will never finish!!!

Stijn had a very similar viewpoint to Wouter, sometimes you need to take the client by the hand and walk them through all the decision points and explain the reasoning behind them. It’s about keeping them informed along the way. Again, user feedback is vital to the process and it’s a way of testing as much as physically possible.

Luke stated that no one really likes feedback but it’s vital to stay on track. Recognise your strengths and weaknesses, get used to getting feedback and work from there! It’s stops you being tunnel visioned and keeps you focussed.

I found MadeThoughts’ discussion really illuminating – it was a really fantastic way of demonstrating how a whole project can be crreated by the audience and not the designers necessairly – all their data and research fed directly and clearly into the project. They collected an insane amount of data when asking the general public their favourite colour and to describe it. Then using a k-means algorithm, they could calculate the world’s favourite colour! They then took all the data and used it as data visualisation stepping stone – taking colours of emotions, words, feelings and so forth.

Dixon Baxi suggested “what if” sessions and taking your work out into the audience to test – again, as the above interviewees stated, this is so vital to making your work as effective as possible!

I also needed to conduct my own research on app design and stumbled across a book which has really helped me understand how I will continue to use my new found skills in app design: through minimalism and clutter-less interfaces. As Robinson states, we try so hard in our day to day lives to avoid physical clutter and retain order in our homes, we aim to do the same with our smart technology. Clever and Clutter-free apps make our lives easier, however, in aiming for clean and clutter-free, we can find ourselves creating apps that are too similar and not as imaginative for fear of messiness and uncertainty. (Robinson, Marsden and Jones (2014) pg.189)


Bibliography

Robinson, Simon, et al. There’s not an app for that: mobile user experience design for life, Elsevier Science and Technology, 2014. ProQuest Ebook Central.

Glug Events (2018) Dixon Baxi. Available at https://youtu.be/_kWkV3ArK5E

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