IxDA Event- Experience is the Product

IxDA Event- Experience is the Product

On Wednesday evening this week, I attended (volunteered at, rather) an IXDA event ‘Experience is the Product’ by Peter Merholz. He is a UX designer, and an author and is often credited for coining the term ‘blog’.

Peter’s talk focussed on the role of a UX Designer and his experience with Product Managers (PM). He argued that the PMs in theory are at the intersection of UX, Tech and Business. But in reality, there is very little focus on the UX aspect:

The role of UX designers has not been the easiest thing to describe. Many describe it using the diagram below:

The diagram suggests that fields like architecture, IxD, UI design, motion design, etc. are part of UX design. And I for one, used the same diagram for my assignments and used it for explaining what UX is to my friends and relatives. Peter, however, compared the role of a UX designer to that of a film director who coordinates with several departments like animation, music, camera, and others to make the film possible. Here is a reference- Walt Disney’s flow chart:

He made modified it to reflect what UX is:
This somehow resonated with me. I’ve been working on my startup to improve the lecture experience and I have taken up the role to manage things that we do as a startup. Yet, I would brand myself as a UX designer more than anything else.
A UX designer, as Peter presented, does the following things:
  • Experience Strategy and Visioning
  • Ideation, Gerating Concepts
  • Focussing Efforts to maximise Impact
  • Ongoing Oversight and Orchestration
  • Making Business Cases for Design

He referred to the Jeff Patton’s explanation of the Dual track development diagram that visualises the process of discovery and development. Peter revisited his initial Venn diagram to illustrate what he thinks is UX design:

I enjoyed the talk and the food. I have volunteered at some of the IxDA events since last year and this was one of them. Meeting industry professionals and others is a good way to stay updated with the practice. 
We pitched at the Founders Start event on the 6th of August. Got some useful feedback on the presentation. We would probably apply for the Founders Launch programme which would require much more commitment!

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