Designing with users: an exercise in empathy

Made by Many’s user insights practice helps us to identify new ways to serve and support people with the digital products and services we create and take to market for our clients.

One of our key goals as a business is to make digital product innovation more human centred, and user insights are a critical part of the process – continuously throughout the whole product lifecycle.

Tim, Tom and Andrew have already talked about our recent launch of School in the Cloud for 2013 TED prize-winner Sugata Mitra, so I won’t go over the background again – this post is a practical guide to the different research methods we used to guide us in the re-design of the ‘Granny Cloud’.

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Emergent product design and embracing uncertainty

If you've read Tim or Tom's posts, you'll know how privileged we feel to have been involved in Sugata Mitra's wish to revolutionise education. Every aspect of the project has been a learning experience.

For us, especially.

Making a product to support an academic research project provided an opportunity to experiment with a new way of working, one which almost entirely removed the lines that usually sit between making, designing and learning.

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tEchDU: Learn with Tech

The way that we teach children today is largely identical to the way that our grandparents and their parents were taught. The world has changed a lot since then not least because of technological advances, but education has not kept pace. In part, that's because of the slow-moving legislative process.

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Granny card avoidance alert

I was talking with Paul recently about bad targeting. More specifically, about how it feels when you are badly targeted by a company. And we came up with an analogy which I think captures it nicely: out of touch themed birthday cards (typically sent by grannies). Don’t know about you, but I still receive cards from older relatives with footballers on it. You might get horses, or cars - something like this...

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