HCI - Lecture 2.4 Creating Design Goals
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In this lecture, I'd like to talk about creating goals for design which is going to be a step before actually creating the design itself. And a step after doing a lot of your need finding observations that we've talked about so far. What we're going to look at in these lectures, the interplay between the tasks that somebody has and the environment or the design that we offer. Herb Simon tells the story watching an ant cross the sand in the desert, and the ant's behavior has a whole lot of weaves and its navigation is quite complex. And, Herb noticed that a lot of the complexity that was apparent there came from the environment, from the structure of the desert sand. And that if he changed the environment, he could change the ant's behavior. And this is an example of how design is a way of transforming people's existing situations, get in to, hopefully ones that people find preferable. And the other thing this tells me is that all design is redesigned. That, people already have a particular design that they're using now. Even if it's cobbled together or not intended for exactly the thing that they're doing. And what we're doing is we're transforming their existing situation into a preferred situation. And, I emphasize that all design is redesigned, because, especially in the world of technology, it's easy to believe that we're creating new things out of whole cloth that are unlike anything ever, anybody's ever seen before. But that's just not the case. People already have ways of communicating, of talking, of sharing, of creating. Technology create new and different ones, but they always have some connection to what people are doing already. And what you want to do in your need finding is to find those things that are the closest existing analog to understand what peoples' goals and values are. And so, from your need finding, from the techniques we've talked about in the past couple of videos, you have a sense of what people do and what their high-level values, goals are, and what the context that their doing those things in are. And one thing that's been great about teaching this class has been looking at your design work, and I see how across the world, the design context, and values, and goals very dramatically. And, and I think that's really important and it's really exciting for me to see that as a teacher. And so, because of that, what we want to be able to do is, take the observations that we have so far and connect those to actual design. Now, we're not going to get to the actual designing part today, that's going to come in the next set of lectures. What we're going to look at today is this intermediate representation of the goals, and one way to think about that is, what's our lever as a designer? How are we going to be able to do this transformation? And what's key to being able to do this is to figure out what matters in a design. often, we think about designing as laying things out on a page, and that's an important piece, and that's a piece that we're going to come to. But, the layout, the interface is trying achieve some larger task or help people with some activity. And if you understand what matters, that also gives you a way of understanding whether different designs are meaningfully different, or how they're meaningfully different, or what it means for a design to be different.