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2284Re: Personaes and Scenarios vs User Roles and User Tasks

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  • marjoriepries
    Aug 17, 2006
      I'm coming to this discussion a little late but per the points below,
      I do not believe you can separate User Tasks from Roles / Personnas.
      It is, I think, naive, to isolate a task as a series of steps and
      then assume those steps solve the needs of all/any users. The very
      nature of the user, who they are and what they want to achieve,
      affects how they approach a task.

      As Alain points out in the example below, what the hobby photographer
      would consider an appropriate sequence of steps for a photo editing
      task are completely different from the task definition you'd get from
      the grandma taking casual family photos.

      The real problem Alain met in his training session was that business
      had not adequately defined the product. Tasks cannot be prioritized
      without the business owners deciding which Roles / Personnas are the
      priority for the release.

      At TW, we usually take care of this with a project QuickStart, or at
      least, have a pretty clear idea lined out with the business
      stakeholders via the statement of work. If the business can't come to
      grips with that and insists that a product be all things to all
      users, bail out quick! - or start figuring out a Vulcan mind game to
      persuade them your priorities are the way to go :-)

      I good book on the subject of deciding what a product or project
      should be about is The Purple Cow by Seth Godin

      > --- In agile-usability@yahoogroups.com, leina elgohari
      <leina_elgohari@...> wrote:
      > At the XP Ottawa meeting, Robert Biddle pointed out that personaes
      and scenarios may be more useful in consumer electronics whereas User
      Roles may be more useful for corporate in-house types of software.
      > "Desilets, Alain" <alain.desilets@...> wrote:
      > Here's another one in the vein of X vs Y.
      > Back in May, I faciliated a short Agile-UCD exercise à la Jeff
      Patton, at the Ottawa XP chapter. The exercise used the concept of a
      photo organizer as its focus.
      > Everything went pretty well until we got to the point of
      establishing a span plan. There, we realized that we didn't know how
      to prioritize the different User Tasks, beyond the first couple
      obvious one. Basically, when trying to answer the question of "is
      task A highly useful", we found ourselves asking the
      question: "Useful for who?". And we found we couldn't answer that
      second question in terms of User Roles. The reason is that
      while "Jim, the enthusiastic hobby photographer" and "Martha the 70
      year old grandma" might both need to act in the role of "Photo
      Corrector", their needs and priority in that respect are very
      different. Martha probably doesn't care that much if the pics don't
      look that good (she just wants to share pics of grandchildren with
      other grannys), but for Jim, that's probably high on the priority
      > Any other thoughts on this topic?
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