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7140Re: [agile-usability] Product Metaphor

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  • Jared Spool
    Jul 24, 2010

      On Jul 22, 2010, at 12:58 AM, Joshua Kerievsky wrote:

      I blogged today about "Product Metaphor" and thought it may be of interest to folks on this list.  

      Here's the link: http://bit.ly/ ch1ztZ


      Great article. Nicely done.

      I'm curious, though. Have you thought about what happens when you have functionality, features, or user needs that extend beyond the metaphor?

      This has always been the trap of metaphors, since the days of desktops and windows. Sure, you can throw out a document by putting it in the trash can, but how do you eject a disk? (Apple had you put it in the trash, which implied something different than removing it from the drive, while Microsoft had you "Eject" which didn't fit the metaphor.)

      Over the years, I've found metaphor-based design thinking to lock the designer into constraints that become unwieldy for innovation. If you're building something that hasn't been ever built before, chances are there isn't a metaphor which encompasses the behaviors you're looking for.

      What do you think?


      Jared M. Spool
      User Interface Engineering
      510 Turnpike St., Suite 102, North Andover, MA 01845
      e: jspool@... p: +1 978 327 5561
      http://uie.com  Blog: http://uie.com/brainsparks  Twitter: @jmspool

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