Human Experience Design FTW

May 27, 2017


This image has nothing to do with this article, other than the fact that it’s one I took recently and I thought your brain might find it pleasing to look at…and coffee is nice. Maybe you want one now. :) You're welcome. #HumanExperienceFTW


I have been an experience designer for over two decades — even before the words ‘experience design’ was a thing. I don’t use the term ‘user’ because quite frankly, I don’t like it. It sounds cold and uncaring and I believe that experience designers should be some of the most empathetic humans on the planet. I have been on all sorts of experience teams — large ones, small ones, short ones, fat ones, ‘something is wrong with that ones’. (Big fan of Dr Seuss).


Most of the time, the teams I have been on were focused on delivering graphics but since Steve Jobs proved that design IS important in technology (shocking I know), a lot of teams have also been focused on experience. What I find odd, however, is that not many of them are focused on humans.


I don’t mean they don’t design for people, almost all of them have or do. What I mean is they don’t focus on humans and build teams around humans. Sure, there is typically a user research team, designers, prototypes and testing but no one really talking or thinking about humans — the science behind how humans think, the emotions and psychology behind how we behave and why.


My dream is to build a team of these humans. A human-support-human experience team. I recently read an article about a museum that hired a neuroscientist to help with exhibits…


“If you’re actually committed to trying to create experiences of art that are as compelling and meaningful and as rich as possible, it would be a good idea to better understand how brains work,” Monroe continues. “It’s such a basic obvious idea, I’m astounded that it never struck me before.” 


— Dan Monroe, PEM Executive Director and CEO. [Full article]


This man is a genius. I also appreciate how he realized it was such an obvious idea but yet no one has really thought to do it before.


Imagine designing a human experience with a neuroscientist on board to tell you exactly what is happening in the human brain. If you think about it, in all the cool films where teams are formed to accomplish something great, the participants are brought together because they each bring a special power, strength or perspective to the mission. This would be an amazing way to design human experience...destroy the ring, eliminate the death star or even merely level up.


May the force be with us.

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