Andy Rooney has made famous the question "did you ever notice?" That phase is always followed by the topic of his current focus. It's usually a focus on the wonderment of how, why, when, or where people do something. Andy Rooney's comments on CBS's 60 Minutes takes the simplest of ideas and dives deep into asking curious questions about what might otherwise seem mundane.
Andy Rooney is an observant individual. By observing and studying people's behaviors we can learn about those things that are common among them. Understanding common behaviors enables my User Experience team here at Comcast to propose new product designs that will have the best chance of serving our customers well.
The Comcast User Experience group (CUE) is a group of observant individuals. We're designers by most common definitions, but we're very much a tapestry of interaction designers, visual designers, engineers, animators, researchers, and producers. This blending of talents means that we can take observations, interpret them, and produce new ideas that intersect with existing human behaviors. For instance, why do some users press Channel Up and Down to graze through the channels to find something to watch? Why do others use the Grid Guide, and yet others prefer to use a Search Tool? During our research sessions we ask these questions and more. By talking to our customers - and observing their natural behaviors, we can design products and features which will best fit our customer's expectations. Our goal is simple. We want our users to be delighted by our products.
As I observe research participants, family members, and friends, I'm educated. For instance, my 14 year old son flies through our product interfaces as if they were a video game - with great purpose, dexterity and speed - as if getting to the program is a contest of speed and accuracy. By contrast, my wife prefers to graze in familiar channels via a straightforward channel number entry.
What have you noticed about the patterns in your household?