The art and democratisation of digital experience design

June 1st, 2016

In June 2015 I was invited by BlueChilli to do a short presentation at their developer and designer offsite on the topic of “What makes a standout user experience through design in the digital space?”

In trying to answer this question I found myself really struggling to qualify anything significantly applicable and mainly because on that last thing they’d want on a friday arvo was more lists of “should do’s”, models, reading references and exercises. 

I was also struck, that in total honesty, I don’t think there is any answer to this question that isn’t highly dependant on a huge range of things. Its simply too broad to handle in 30 mins + questions.

So I flipped it away from methods and to the other side – the experience, intuition and innate skills we develop over time and from working with others.

My hope was to provide the space for permission or confidence to rely on each designer’s unique skills, and how to handle making mistakes to get to the ‘standout user experience’

Basically there is more than science to good experience design –

  • there is an artist’s ability to make a leap using imagination and also the artist’s confidence in experimentation (which is also scientific but we don’t always have the frameworks to run a ‘proper’ experiment)
  • there is the team and it’s the team holding a shared and informed user experience frame of mind working collectively with respect for expertise that is also fundamental to good experiences.

The presentation is below. Skip to slide 6, everything prior is a bit of background about me. It’s not a particularly long presentation and I spoke a lot in each section about my experiences that have led me to this.