In week 2’s tutorial, we employed affinity diagrams to study needs, motivations, interests and frustrations of potential users. The diagram our group built is attached below:


how did this exercise help you build empathy with prospective users?

By studying every detail in an interview, I learnt the background information, preferences, and good/bad former experience in using other products, from which I can better analyse and predict the user behaviours so that I can create a more personalised design for this prospective user/user group.

how did the clustering of information help you to understand user needs?

By gathering all the detailed information together and group them into several hierarchical groups, I am able to understand that what are the common needs or problems that different users have. Because individuals vary in their concrete needs for a product or service, we as designers can hardly fulfil all their detailed requirements. But what w can do is to analyse what are the common user needs and fix this problem in our design.

what was difficult or challenging with the technique? How would you do it better next time?

This is a brand new technique for me. During this time, my difficulty mainly existed in how to group the detailed information pieces and think of a higher level to summarise the common problems. I later understood that this difficulty is partly caused by small amount of information we gathered. Next time I will find as much information as possible so that we can leave the concrete needs which are too special that cannot be grouped with others, only proceed with points that have similar content or topic with others.

by Xitong HUANG (xhua8250)