persona is a tool to "feel the pain" of the activity
28 Nov 2007 - 5:36pm
6 years ago
What is the goal of persona creation?
To a large extent it's a framing tool. Persona creation is a tool to "feel
the pain" of the activity, to empathize with the users. The research, which
goes into creation of personas does not contradict, and actually may
complement the activity centered design process.
Creation of personas are not necessary (or "useful"), when
*everyone*involved in the design already feels the pain of the
activity for which the
product is designed. In this case, the frames created by would be personas
are already internalized.
Alphasmart is one good example of the activity pain felt by the designers,
who listened to the users. The company has tried to sell more or less
standard laptops to the high schools initially. Imagine 30 power plugs in
the classroom. Teachers suggested removing unnecessary features. Designers
have listened and the company now sells much simpler, cheaper, hard to
destruct wireless word processors, which runs for six months from two AA
batteries. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0fWVIwmrfiA (skip to 26 min, the
rest of the clip is also quite educational: total user experience created by
iTunes, "add value, not features" at StarMine and other concepts all too
familiar to this list).