It’s 5:45pm on an unseasonably warm February afternoon. On the radio, Manchester City and Chelsea are contesting the League Cup final. It’s 0-0, a stalemate, as so many games seem to be these days.
I came into this game too late, I didn’t see the opening exchanges when the tempo and character of the game is set. If you come into a game after half-time you’re constantly playing catchup. You need to be guided by the commentators and the crowd (are they angry, frustrated, nervous?) to understand the narrative of the game.
When researching and designing products for clients or users, we often forget how much people want to be guided.
It’s all well and good doing hours of user testing and research but there comes a time when you have to make a decision about how someone is going to be told how to use your product.
As the poet Stevie Smith remarked, “A lot of people pretend, out of bravery, really, that they are very jolly and ordinary sorts of chaps, but really they do not feel at all at home in the world… Sometimes the brave pretence breaks down…”. Sometimes we all need a guide.
There are 1134 of you on this list, or ‘Hell’ if you type that number on a calculator and turn it upside down. Classic classroom humour. “Go to 1134,” said the calculator.
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