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Re: [agile-usability] can agile customers support minimal commitment to UX design? was: Minimal commitment UX design

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  • Ron Jeffries
    ... An answer is: yes. I ve seen it done, quite frequently. Contrary to pessimistic notions one might hold about mere users , they re quite capable of
    Message 1 of 33 , Sep 30, 2005
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      On Friday, September 30, 2005, at 12:57:12 PM, Brian Marick wrote:

      > The question is - is it possible to convince people to be satisfied
      > with a UI that lets them see that the system can do a specific task
      > they asked for, but not yet in a pleasant way and not yet in a way
      > that's smoothly a part of their workflow, with no gaps, etc.? Can
      > constant and verifiable forward progress be combined with a withholding
      > of judgment about the visible?

      An answer is: yes. I've seen it done, quite frequently. Contrary to
      pessimistic notions one might hold about "mere users", they're quite
      capable of understanding that there is more going on than the
      GUI, and they're quite capable of understanding the value of a rough
      interface that lets them see things.

      They're even quite capable of expressing requirements in forms that
      lead to acceptance tests.

      Some of them are almost as smart as we are ... just about different
      stuff.

      Ron Jeffries
      www.XProgramming.com
      Do, or do not. There is no try. --Yoda
    • Brian Marick
      ... See, that s the issue. I recently had a client who was converting an old, old system from one type of database to another. It was hell. But it would wrong
      Message 33 of 33 , Oct 2, 2005
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        On Oct 1, 2005, at 9:28 AM, Joshua Seiden wrote:
        >
        >> 2) How could the system have been built such that the decision to
        >> switch could have been made later - still with reasonable cost?
        >
        > Don't know. I'm not in the construction business ;-)

        See, that's the issue. I recently had a client who was converting an
        old, old system from one type of database to another. It was hell. But
        it would wrong to conclude that's an unavoidable fact about systems
        that use databases. It's just a consequence of the way they originally
        decided to do it. We could go back in time and say to them, "What
        you're about to do is a *bad* idea. Do this instead. It's only a
        trivially different amount of work, it won't affect anything users see,
        but you'll be happy you did if you ever switch databases."

        So your data point isn't suggestive unless we could expose the design
        to an expert and have that person say either what my database person
        would have said or "I cannot see any way to build a system that would
        support UX 1 and also easily be switched to UX 2."

        If we're to understand what we have to get right up front and what can
        be deferred, we need to look in some detail at both successes and
        failures.


        >> 3) How can the system be built such that *not* switching doesn't
        >> result in a lot of work with no payoff?
        >
        > I'm not sure I understand this question. Can you clarify what you're
        > asking?

        Suppose there's a way of building a system such that it both supports
        UX 1 today and would make it easy to switch to UX 2 tomorrow. That way
        makes the system 50% more expensive to build today. If the switch is
        never made, that's a lot of money spent with no return. We need a way
        where additional up-front cost is low.

        -----
        Brian Marick, independent consultant
        Mostly on agile methods with a testing slant
        www.exampler.com, www.testing.com/cgi-bin/blog
        Book in progress: www.exampler.com/book
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