Transparent User Centered Design on a Dime
Andy Hamilton, IDSA (Industrial Design), Elizabeth Mauer (Human Factors) and Corinna Proctor
(Human Factors), HumanCentric
People are connected to each other and to information in a way they never have been before.
Smartphones and netbooks allow them to bring that connection wherever they go, and these
devices are increasing their ubiquity every day. People like being connected to one another and
sharing their experiences. This is both a great opportunity and valuable resource for designers.
With connectivity so prevalent, people have the capability to be involved in the decisions that
shape the world around them – and they want to take advantage of that option. It is easy to see in
the events surrounding the most recent economic recession that the willingness to tolerate being
left in the dark is certainly in a decline, as a call for greater transparency ripples through our
government and financial institutions. In addition, limiting the resources available to decision
makers does not make the situation any easier. Businesses are now being asked to do more with
less in a social climate that is going through some significant changes.
So, here is the challenge: how do designers and researchers foster collaboration between those
who create and those who experience design - even when resources are scarce? Luckily, there
are a number of tools already available; we just have to know where they are and how to use