Blog Post: Does ‘Delight’ Change The Meaning of MVP?

After my first couple of months in the realm of QA, I noticed something rather interesting. Some of my colleagues, who did the same work I did for the same pay, started describing themselves with different verbiage. Specifically, they changed their titles on email signatures and LinkedIn. Before I knew it, we were all calling ourselves Quality Assurance Engineers, Test Engineers, Test Strategy Coordinators, and so on.

Didn’t change the fact that we were QA. Certainly didn’t change how we were viewed by PMO or development. 

That’s what I think of when I read articles like this very well written piece by Startup Blender on the difference between a Minimum Viable Product versus Minimum Delightful Product. Regardless of whatever differences you see, if the first iteration of a product does not delight stakeholders or the customer, then it’s not viable in the least.

I wholeheartedly understand and support the sentiment the writer aspires to. Viable is boring and utilitarian, which is not what a designer or big thinker wants to put in front of users. He wants to wow them from day one, and if that isn’t achieved you must start over.

Just be careful that you don’t walk down a rabbit’s hole of making sure the title of your idea is perfect. You might make your next pitch session a little peppier than normal, but those you really want to impress won’t be fooled.

You delight your users by finding what is described as the “product gestalt”. This description of the perfect union of design, UX, and ideas was the best part of this post. As that famous person said that time, “form and function are one.”

If you need to change one word of MVP to achieve that, go for it. Go on with your bad self delighting users. Just don’t try and convince me that’s not what viable is supposed to mean. We all know better.

Blog Post: Does ‘Delight’ Change The Meaning of MVP?

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Blog Post: We Are All #UX Designers

Whether that headline refers to your chosen profession or not, there is something about what we do that is affected by your product’s user experience. Whether the product refers to your job, your hobby, even your family, the interactions others have means everything.

The beauty of this piece from Smashing Magazine detailing 13 tenets of UX is the theme that we can’t work in a vacuum. We must involve others in the process.

Sometimes that means gathering large amounts of data. With the advent of big data, it brought along with it many means of collecting it. At my company, we can measure every click, hover and eye movement on a website. People measure steps, calories and heart rate with their mobile device. Data is everywhere.

Other times we must involve people. Every user will not experience your product the same. You may not be able to incorporate every opinion into your design, but enough feedback can be gathered to help most of them.

While gathering all of that can seem like a large task, it is part of a strategic plan. It does require bravery and a bold vision to execute. If you view any interaction with your product as all part of the same plan, you think about design differently.

That does require attention to detail, but that should not be a deterrent. Great UX is iterated upon cycle after cycle. Take each detail on one at a time, and before you know it a full experience is mastered.

Blog Post: We Are All #UX Designers

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Blog Post: Minimum User Design

In all honesty, I was drawn to the title of this post on Smashing Magazine because of my affinity for the Minimum Viable Product. In it, the author describes a way to gauge the progress of a website design and then add functionality after it accomplishes it’s primary need. What a way to approach product […]

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Blog Post: The Dreaded #RWD

No, this isn’t a post to tell you what the hottest buzzword in mobile development right now: responsive web design. It’s not even a real description of the term. I would hope that you expect more from your tech blogs than that. I’m assuming if you are still here, that you are familiar with the […]

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Blog Post: Can We Be Truly Efficient? – Inadvertently, I started posting cool videos on Fridays, so I think I have decided to try the tradition out. So welcome to the first official Video Friday.

It is really cool to see people take a concept and truly apply it to their life. If you want to know if someone really believes in what they are selling, see if they do it in their home. This designer defines “practicing what you preach” with his NYC apartment  It would be really easy to be dismissive with his design or say, “well that only works because…”.

We can’t put qualifiers on ideas that work. If we want to be truly agile in our thinking, we take the great ideas and see how they can integrate into ours. I would highly doubt the architects or designers of this apartment to expect us to exactly follow this concept for the idea to be successful. Bottom line, we can’t expect to build a better world if we don’t start sampling great ideas and make them our own. 

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Blog Post: what does the word “design” mean to you?

Anyone who is or has worked with designers (of any kind) will enjoy today’s link.

I would not consider myself a “designer” in the truest sense, even though I have held jobs with that word in the title. Most of the time, I merely gathered the requirements of the customer and made sure everything they asked for made it to the comps. This article refers to true leaders in how to make something from scratch.

Then again, don’t we all grasp that concept? If a designer quit their job for a few years to stay home with kids or care for a family member, does the fact that they aren’t clicking the mouse anymore make them any less of a designer?

This goes back to something I posted previously. We all have ideas on how to make stuff. Granted, the ideas of the uninitiated may be rough or uninformed. We must look at design work as something in between a trade and art. There are mechanics to learn, but training can only take you so far. The upper echelon of any industry just have “it”.

Keep all this in mind when meeting with your design team. Curious of your thoughts.

Blog Post: what does the word “design” mean to you?

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