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11

Personas as real people representatives

In this article Jonathan Grudin and John Pruitt discuss the concept of personas and scenarios. While Alan Cooper's personas are based on anecdotes and on appeals to reason, the authors argue for a more realistic approach. Personas should be based on real people and evolve in response to field studies, focus groups, interviews, observation, usability studies, and so on. This way, personas turn into a powerful means of communicating feedback from real people to the design team.

In their opinion, paticipatory design, which Grudin has been advocating for many years, is less effective in commercial mass-market product development, because finding representative participants is a challenge. But personas can bring the same level of engagement with users, empathy, and commitment to mass-market development projects.

Links:

Henrik Olsen - August 15, 2002

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12

Personas: Matching a Design to the Users' goals

By trying to satisfy the needs of all users, designers often fail to satisfy the needs of any one user. The concept of personas - originally developed by Alan Cooper - suggests that we should rather focus on the unique goals of one archetypal user profile synthesized from a series of interviews with real people. By adhering to the goals of a specific persona, we develop a product that satisfies the needs of the many.

This article from UIE gives a short introduction to the approach.

Links:

  • The article Personas: Matching a Design to the Users' goals

Henrik Olsen - May 02, 2002

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13

Usability Toolkit

InfoDesign has a section with a lot of free usability toolkit materials including descriptions of usability techniques and downloadable tools such as guidelines, check lists, examples and software.

Links:

  • The toolkit at InfoDesign.com

Henrik Olsen - April 09, 2002

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See also: Tools (49)  Expert reviews (6)  Card sorting (8)  Requirement Analysis (12)  Usability testing (28)  Wireframing and prototyping (29) 


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