How did taking the position of an Extreme User influence your thinking in relation to the design challenge?

Having an extreme user allowed us to have better assumptions on what they would like about our design and what they would prefer to see. Our extreme user, the ‘trekkie’ also restricted our design parameters, as this user would be more interested in high-tech designs. However it is also because of this restriction that it allowed us to generate more ideas within this field that in turn created better design solutions for one specific type of user.

In the picture below, I had created a character that fits within our extreme user. This allowed us to understand our user better by putting ourselves in what their life and backstory is like.

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Was it different to how you usually generate ideas and empathy?

Yes it was different to how I usually generate ideas as usually in my current field of work (marketing and media), ideas are generated from a more broad audience and usually demo specific e.g. Women 25 – 54. This changes the approach to empathy as we are no longer looking for an extreme user but and idea that pleases a much larger audience. My ideas are also usually generated based on specific insight about the target such as ‘88% of W 25 – 54 are on their smart phones while watching TV’ so our ideas are generating around data rather than characteristics.

This process allowed us to therefore empathise with our user before we had generated ideas and follow him on his journey to using our design which was more enjoyable to explore as you feel like you are right beside them, experiencing the journley like you are walking in their shoes.

Did any of the other design thinking techniques (design provocation cards, stories, storyboards, etc.) help you to work through ideas and collaborate with your group members?

Stories did help work through our ideas, as it is one thing to design something your extreme user might like, but it is another to see how they would use it in their life. By creating a persona story, it allowed us to brainstorm different situations our user would use it and storyboarding this allowed us to fill in the details such as where is the product place within the environment, what it would look like and draw out his emotions and reactions before, during and after using our product.

The first example displays the character’s urgency and anxiety of being late (Teleporter)

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The second example displays the character’s affection and feelings being using our design (Memory Box)

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