Think First

“You will not find inspiration looking at the work of other designers.” p.11

They are someone else’s solutions to someone else’s problem. If you cannot find a good solution, likely you do not have a good problem.

Research Rule #1 - assume you know nothing

#2 shut up and listen. Read, re-read and take copious notes. Then look for patterns. What matters most - strategic simplicity.

Product sales skyrocket when the experience of use exceeds our expectations.

Businesses: want to make and save money.

Questions to ask:

  • who are your customers?
  • what business goal should the end product serve and what should it do for the business?
  • what role does product play in company’s overall business strategy?
  • what tech is in place, and what related tech decisions have already been made?
  • why do you think customer would use this specific product? over yours?

Top Five Competitors,

  • what are the differences in their business model?
  • If people use competitors' products - why?
  • What’s your strategy in terms of positioning and differentiating this product?

Silence equals agreement. If you say nothing about something you think is not possible… you are agreeing to do it.

Open-ended questions for users:

  • what part do you hate doing?
  • what frustrates you most about this?
  • how often do you use this product (or tool)?
  • what do you use it to do?
  • can you show me how to do that?
  • what do you do before, during and after you use this product?
  • are there other systems you’ve used that are similar?

Add a system of repeated, recognized rewards.

Every force that acts upon a project evolves that product’s final feature set, form, and functions.

  • audience expectations

  • client desires/fears

  • personal opinion/taste

  • cultural assumptions

  • political preferences

  • technology preferences

  • time

  • money

  • personnel

Think first. Re-evaluate your work by putting yourself in the place of the people who will have to use what you create.

Bibliographical Information

Think First
by Joe Natoli, ISBN 978-0-9863448-0-0
Twofold/Give Good UX; Baltimore, Maryland 2015

These are notes I made after reading this book. See more book notes

Just to let you know, this page was last updated Thursday, Jun 20 24