Talk with child about your project


The title is not a metaphor. I could make a funny story here about designing with a baby on her lap and talking about life, but no one has time to read / write it. To the point. When designing the kitchen, I persuaded my wife to use a blackboard wall. There were supposed to be shopping lists and child’s drawings. The child draws ugly, and the shopping list on the wall is the least practical thing ever. Effect? I have an entire wall at my disposal.

In addition to the project, I also have an uncompromising recipient of my diagrams at my fingertips in the form of a two-year-old, whose curiosity is tearing from the inside. And this is how we discuss the project:

  • (…)
  • What is this?
  • The Statistics screen that appears at the end of the game
  • Why?
  • So that the user knows how much money he has collected for a good cause
  • Why?
  • So that he would be aware that his playing was not unproductive….
  • Why?
    (…)

The dialogue took longer, but answering the persistently asked question „why?” we come to the heart of the product. After talking with the child, it turns out that we have a logical sequence that we have never verbalized. Now for the best…. try to return to the starting point on this string. The journey from detail to core should be trivial. But coming back a little less. You may come across a slightly different solution at each step. „These sweet details.” A few levels down, this detail can turn your screen upside down.

Talking to your baby has another advantage. How can you not explain a problem in simple words, i.e. that you do not fully understand it yourself? There’s a great thread / r / explainlikeimfive on reddit. In the case of most contemporary creations, I propose the „explainlikeimnon-tech” solution. Almost every such conversation forces you to look at the product from a slightly different angle.

Conclusion?

Look at your product through the eyes of a two-year-old. Choose any item and answer the question „why?” until you get to the bottom of the product. Turn around and go back to square one. You don’t have a baby? Talk with cup of coffee 🙂 Talk and think.

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