Notes from Jesse James Garrett Talk

Had the pleasure of attending a very intimate presentation and discussion with Jesse James Garret and Tamara Wayland of span class=”vcard”>Adaptive Path, so I thought I’d share a few notes I took…

  • I like that part of AP’s mission statement is “improve people’s lives”
  • They see themselves improve people’s lives via three paths:
    1. Consulting
    2. Education
    3. Thought leaderships (articles/books)
  • A recent project that I found interesting: www.changemakers.com
  • Really pushed hard on designing with the user, not at the user
  • Talk about confrontation happening when asking this question: Who owns the customer?
    • Is it sales?
    • Is it customer service?
    • Is it product delivery?
  • Probably a bit of all of them, but hard to get them all talking together, let alone get them on the same page
  • Some companies focus on new technology
  • Others advance beyond that to new features
  • The best move beyond that to the user experience
  • “When you first start off trying to solve a problem, the first solutions you come up with are very complex, and most people stop there. But if you keep going, and live with the problem and peel more layers of the onion off, you can often times arrive at some very elegant and simple solutions.”
  • In the early 1900s, the most advanced camera had “an easy” 19 steps to taking a photograph, including changing glass plates inside the camera
  • George Eastman (of Eastman Kodak) had a better idea: “you press the button, we do the rest”
  • Eastman invented idea of a roll of film
  • Rather than simply put a roll of film into old camera box, he re-designed the entire camera experience
  • The first Kodak camera had 3 steps
  • That product transformed its product category
  • Similar: Tivo could have easily put a hard-drive into an old VCR box, but, when completely re-inventing a process, they changed everything they could.
  • Similar: Wii could have tried to compete with X-Box and PlayStation, but had a better idea…
  • “Products are people too”: the Tivo logo has legs!
  • Humanize product thru design, makes users “love” their products, not just “use” them
  • Simpler is better – do few things, simply
  • Jitterbug phone: dropped A LOT of features, because they knew their market, and designed for their optimum experience
  • “The experience is the product” (iPhone, Wii, etc.)
  • When trying to justify cost of creating new experience, ask “What is the value of a customer?”, then decide value of getting/keeping customer

Thanks to Jesse and Tamara for coming out!

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