Tech sidebar  

Thirty years ago people would casually ask doctors for medical advice at parties. Nowadays, people don't hesitate to ask for computer advice immediately after discovering that the person in front of them knows what PCMCIA really means. Self-acknowledged geeks get calls from the friends, neighbors, and family members such as, "Why is my computer running slowly?" or "Why do all these windows pop up when I'm using my browser?" or "Which spyware program should I buy?" or "I'm starting a business, how do I create a web page?" or "I need a program to do...."

Computers are complicated objects that take a lot of learning to utilize them effectively and to feel comfortable with them. Some users are daunted by the array of options and problems that computers can pose when the computer is working as the user expects. If something goes wrong, the user is not confident enough to know whether it's something they did or a bonafide error in the computer, program or a combination of the two.

Fixing computer "problems" often necessitates a holistic approach - not just "fixing" the computer, but also looking at how the user is interacting with the computer and how the user can be taught to interact with the computer going forward. Likewise developing new software needs to take a holistic approach. The software design team must not only anticipate the users experience with the system, they must also work with and study the users during the development phase to better understand how they expect or use the program, documentation as well as the technical support.

Developing a positive user experience is more than just software engineering. See our skillset to see how we can help make your next user experience a positive one.