Why we need to involve the “local” end users

It doesn’t matter how we design systems, there are cultural considerations to be taken into account as Bill Moggridge, founder of IDEO, outlined  at EmTech@MIT 2009 and as described in the MIT Technology Review, demonstrating the need for some difficult considerations that go into designing for a connected world.  Two examples are provided of the need to be aware of cultural constraints that might exist when employing technology.

However, this is an international perspective and we need to be aware of constraints on using services at all levels of employment. How best can we do this? Well, we could watch the locals, as Moggridge demonstrates, an academic practice known as ethnography, which can be quite lengthy and time consuming. Another method might simply be to involve the “locals” in the design, implementation and testing of any application, electronic or otherwise.

Due to the constant change in the adoption or use of different communications media, this consultation needs to be ongoing and is not necessarily about technology, it’s primarily about the processes behind the wires and chips.

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