Field studies and interaction design
       nicolas nova | liftlab
       Head, Geneva | October 2009

Thursday, October 1...
Inspiration




                             Expiration (creation)


Thursday, October 15, 2009
Inspiration

                             Investigation of existing
                             usages, habits, environme...
“Needs” - The Holy Grail?
                   “designing to meet observed needs reinforces
                   structure and...
Formative
                                  research



              Starting point or
              filter for ideas



...
Sociology                                         Ergonomics
                                                       - huma...
Design research / User research / Field research /
         Ethnography / Design ethnography / Contextual
         researc...
Formative                                           Evaluative
                             research                      ...
Starting points for desk research:
                •       Conferences: CHI( ACM Conference on Human
                     ...
➡ Understanding people in their context: what are
         they doing? how are they doing what they do? what
         does...
➡ Investigate an activity (find one’s way in an urban
           environment) before the design of a location-based servic...
➡ Investigate an activity (find one’s way in an urban
           environment) before the design of a location-based servic...
➡ Investigate an activity (find one’s way in an urban
           environment) before the design of a location-based servic...
methodology...(inspired by) ethnography

Thursday, October 15, 2009
Investigate people
        in their context




Thursday, October 15, 2009
sampling
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Visual

                                                          Photography

                                           ...
design issue


            user research / data gathering


                              data analysis


                ...
observation / participant observation
                              design issue                (photo, video, notes)

   ...
design issue


           user research / data gathering

                                             “Thick/rich” descri...
research FOR design

Thursday, October 15, 2009
What comes out of these research?

      ➡ Question designers’ opinions with field data
      ➡ Show people’s life, realit...
Ask questions

           ➡ Does what you observe in ... can be applied to ...
           (=urban signage? new media consu...
design issue


           user research / data gathering


                              data analysis

                  ...
inform                        inspire


              contraints,          material for
              sometimes           ...
users? people? consumers?




                             ➡ what vocabulary? what vocabulary to work
                    ...
“we tried but it did not work”

                             “we ask our users... what they wanted and it did
            ...
Fit into people’s life OR change people’s life?




                             ➡ Tension between satisfying people’s nee...
References

     ➡ IDEO (2009). Human-Centered Design Toolkit, http://bit.ly/
     EUHLL
     ➡ IDII, Ivrea (2003-2004). U...
Menu for next courses

      ➡ Course’s blog: http://usages.wordpress.com/
      ➡ Each course will address a certain set ...
Assignement

    ➡ Each student will have to read a research paper and present it to
    the class:
                      ...
Let’s discuss your question




Thursday, October 15, 2009
thanks
         nicolas@liftlab.com

Thursday, October 15, 2009
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Field research and interaction design

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First deck of slide from the Field Research and Interaction Design, a Master course at the Geneva University of Art and Design, in the Media Design program taught in 2009-2010.

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Field research and interaction design

  1. 1. Field studies and interaction design nicolas nova | liftlab Head, Geneva | October 2009 Thursday, October 15, 2009
  2. 2. Inspiration Expiration (creation) Thursday, October 15, 2009
  3. 3. Inspiration Investigation of existing usages, habits, environments or product’s potential In-depth understanding of people’s behavior, belief, preferences and context Potential issues and problems turned into design opportunities Potential solutions existing in other contexts or proposed by specific users (generally not “requirements”, “needs”) Thursday, October 15, 2009
  4. 4. “Needs” - The Holy Grail? “designing to meet observed needs reinforces structure and removes its capacity to invent futures” Matt Webb “it's the old thing..you have research or consumer insights or whatever? and the assumption should be to find the flex points where things can sort of fit into "consumer's" practices, but not rigidly” Julian Bleecker Thursday, October 15, 2009
  5. 5. Formative research Starting point or filter for ideas Summative research Thursday, October 15, 2009
  6. 6. Sociology Ergonomics - human factors Psychology + marketing research... Thursday, October 15, 2009
  7. 7. Design research / User research / Field research / Ethnography / Design ethnography / Contextual research / Usage research / User-centered design / User safari / User modeling / ... = Research FOR design Science or Facts versus informed opinions to orient action? Thursday, October 15, 2009
  8. 8. Formative Evaluative research research Problem Literature Field research Solution Field/lab Issue review/desk (primary research) research Brief research (prototyping) (secondary research) Thursday, October 15, 2009
  9. 9. Starting points for desk research: • Conferences: CHI( ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems), DUX (Designing for User eXperiences), EPIC ( Ethnographic Praxis in Industry Conference), Interact, Interaction, ... • Journals: ACM interactions • Weblogs: Putting People First (http://bit.ly/ U0Ga), Future Perfect (http://bit.ly/cyBKO), Design investigations (http://bit.ly/55BFH), ... Thursday, October 15, 2009
  10. 10. ➡ Understanding people in their context: what are they doing? how are they doing what they do? what does it mean? ➡ Apply this knowledge to design issues (interaction design and beyond) ➡ Interprete, synthesize, infer: not only collecting informations but, rather analyze them to draw implications ➡ A trained Observer/Researcher matters Thursday, October 15, 2009
  11. 11. ➡ Investigate an activity (find one’s way in an urban environment) before the design of a location-based service ➡ Understand the use of a technique (2D camera such as Eye Toy and webcams) to draw implications for the following technique (3D camera) ➡ Explore specific behavior (cooperative play with Nintendo DS) or motivations (collecting weird objects) ➡ Describe the appropriation or acceptation of a device (e- books in public transports) ➡ Explore how a certain service is hybridized with existing practices (how rendezvousing evolved with cell-phones) Thursday, October 15, 2009
  12. 12. ➡ Investigate an activity (find one’s way in an urban environment) before the design of a location-based service ➡ Understand the use of a technique (2D camera such as Eye Toy and webcams) to draw implications for the following technique (3D camera) Descriptions ➡ Explore specific behavior (cooperative play with Nintendo DS) or motivations (collecting weird objects) ➡ Describe the appropriation or acceptation of a device (e- books in public transports) ➡ Explore how a certain service is hybridized with existing practices (how rendezvousing evolved with cell-phones) Thursday, October 15, 2009
  13. 13. ➡ Investigate an activity (find one’s way in an urban environment) before the design of a location-based service before designing (2Dsolution ➡ Understand the use of a technique a camera such as Eye Toy and webcams) to draw implications for the following technique (3D camera) ➡ Explore specific behavior (cooperative play with Nintendo DS) or motivations (collecting weird objects) ➡ Describe the appropriation or acceptation of a device (e- after designing a solution books in public transports) ➡ Explore how a certain service is hybridized with existing practices (how rendezvousing evolved with cell-phones) Thursday, October 15, 2009
  14. 14. methodology...(inspired by) ethnography Thursday, October 15, 2009
  15. 15. Investigate people in their context Thursday, October 15, 2009
  16. 16. sampling Thursday, October 15, 2009
  17. 17. Visual Photography Video Artifacts Observation Participant observation Quantitative Qualitative Interviews (individual/groups) Survey Confrontation to material Questionnaires (video/photo) Verbal Thursday, October 15, 2009
  18. 18. design issue user research / data gathering data analysis implications for design communication Thursday, October 15, 2009
  19. 19. observation / participant observation design issue (photo, video, notes) interview (open, in-depth...), contexual user research / data gathering interview, lead-users/expert interview survey / census / photo survey data analysis diary, beeper, ... implications for design shadowing communication ... ➡ combinations as well Thursday, October 15, 2009
  20. 20. design issue user research / data gathering “Thick/rich” descriptions: context, data analysis process/sequence of actions, ... Problems or recurring events (to be implications for design categorized): repetitions, cycles, clusters, absence, growth... Lists of ressources employed for the activity (tools, people, ...) ... Thursday, October 15, 2009
  21. 21. research FOR design Thursday, October 15, 2009
  22. 22. What comes out of these research? ➡ Question designers’ opinions with field data ➡ Show people’s life, reality-check, understand the complexity/ subtelty and peculiar aspects of situations ➡ Critique of normative visions about the future (3D Web, intelligent fridge,...) ➡ Propose products/services concepts loosely related with motivations, needs problems or tasks ➡ Understand adoption barriers to a product, feature... ➡ Evaluate and prioritize concepts, ideas and solutions ➡ Learn from a culture, community of users (extreme, lead) or new markets ➡ Understand people’s creativity to craft their own solutions Thursday, October 15, 2009
  23. 23. Ask questions ➡ Does what you observe in ... can be applied to ... (=urban signage? new media consumption)? ➡ Is there a digital equivalent to X or Y? Does it matter? ➡ Draw lessons about why people do X or Y? Which of these motivations could be transferred to other contexts? ➡ If you see people using device A or B? What sort of services/features can you envision about A or B? ➡- ... Thursday, October 15, 2009
  24. 24. design issue user research / data gathering data analysis implications for design Persona/user profiles intermediary objects Scenarios/vignette Experiences models Problem lists ... Prototypes Thursday, October 15, 2009
  25. 25. inform inspire contraints, material for sometimes design quantitative (% of internet access, etc.) Thursday, October 15, 2009
  26. 26. users? people? consumers? ➡ what vocabulary? what vocabulary to work altogether? (designers, UX, engineer, marketing, etc.) Thursday, October 15, 2009
  27. 27. “we tried but it did not work” “we ask our users... what they wanted and it did not work” ➡ Confusion between observing behaviors (interprete) and ask people what they want/need (“Faster Horses” Henry Ford) Thursday, October 15, 2009
  28. 28. Fit into people’s life OR change people’s life? ➡ Tension between satisfying people’s needs/ expectations (reinforcing the existing) versus inventing new futures Thursday, October 15, 2009
  29. 29. References ➡ IDEO (2009). Human-Centered Design Toolkit, http://bit.ly/ EUHLL ➡ IDII, Ivrea (2003-2004). User Research at IDII, http://bit.ly/ 4e7rY6 ➡ Kuniavsky, M. (2003). Observing the User Experience: A Practitioner's Guide to User Research, Morgan-Kauffman. ➡ Saffer, D. (2007). Designing for Interaction : Creating Smart Applications and Clever Devices, New Rider Press. ➡ Visocky O’Graddy, J+K (2006). A Designers’s Research Manual. Design Field Guides, Rockport. ➡ Wasson, C. (2000). Ethnography in the field of design, Human Organization 59(4): 377-388, http://bit.ly/TYfg8 Thursday, October 15, 2009
  30. 30. Menu for next courses ➡ Course’s blog: http://usages.wordpress.com/ ➡ Each course will address a certain set of techniques ➡ Next course will be about theoretical considerations (sampling, theoretical frameworks) and observations Thursday, October 15, 2009
  31. 31. Assignement ➡ Each student will have to read a research paper and present it to the class: • 10 minutes, no slides • Outline: summary + why is it relevant for design + personal opinion • For next course: “Reading Ahead” by Portigal Consulting (Slides: http://bit.ly/geX6l Blogposts: http://bit.ly/19jAd4 ) ➡ Project: • Choose a research question (related or not to your personal project or a studio project) • Go observe users/usages related to this question (passive observation and photography) • Prepare a 5 minutes presentations (with slides) of the main findings, we will discuss the results in class at the next course • For each course there will be a similar assignement with regards to the projects. Project completition will consist in the addition of all the assignements Thursday, October 15, 2009
  32. 32. Let’s discuss your question Thursday, October 15, 2009
  33. 33. thanks nicolas@liftlab.com Thursday, October 15, 2009

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