Ux London 2017 - Day 3, Design

Here are the highlights for day 3 of my trip to UX London 2017.

Talk: Form follows me, Mark Rolston
Mark is the founder of Product Design consultancy Argodesign and he talked about the impact of digital products running deeper into people's lives. A great example of which was a teenager reading a book on the sofa with a reading light at her shoulder. When she closed the book she swiped through an endless list of apps on her phone and finally located the correct one to turn the lamp off. All the time the switch for the light was within reaching distance from her. The main thrust of the talk was the modern dilemma of technology encroaching in the fabric of our lives and how that can be managed.

Mark also showed an example of how technology can be integrated into our lives through light - calling it ‘Mixed Reality’. A system of sensors, cameras, microphones and bulbs projected a light onto a surface in the home. This light can be interacted with in order to perform everyday tasks such as increasing volume on a stereo, reading emails and help with cooking.

Beef taco and radish salsa recipe

Credit: @argodesigned https://twitter.com/argodesigned/status/867393631291834368

Talk: Design by algorithms, Lysandre Follet
Lysandre is Director of Generative Design at NIKE. His talk described how NIKE use machines to influence the design process and how they can co-create with humans. He explained how leveraging computers to enhance design allows for thousands of ideas to be generated.

Workshop: Practical Jobs To Be Done, Jim Kalbach
Responding to the increase in popularity of the Jobs To Be Done (JTBD) framework and the apparent lack of guidance for it’s application in day to day work, Jim’s workshop provided tools by which to extract, formulate and implement JTBD. It was a great session based on Tony Ulwick’s book Jobs To Be Done: Theory To Practice.

After referencing Theodore Levitt’s famous drill quote we were encouraged to think of what jobs other products were design to get done. Once we had a handle on the general concept we were given a task to work on. We mapped customer insight, extracted their JTBD and assigned outcomes. After prioritising the outcomes we made Jobs Stories with the view to take them in a design studio type of workshop for ideation.

Workshop on practical jobs to be done

Much of what I’ve read about JTBD focusses on the Job Story and it was refreshing to take part in the wider application of the framework.

After a toasty three days and with a beer in hand, the sun started to set and we bid farewell to the Laban Building for another year. It was a fab few days of talks, workshops and networking, with tons to listen to and learn, all delivered by a fine calibre of speakers and facilitators.

Back at HQ
Meanwhile back at Red Badger HQ I replayed the JTBD workshop back to the team during our bi-annual UX Roundtable. It was a great opportunity to research further into Tony Ulwick’s Outcome Driven Innovation (ODI) technique. It’s a relatively elaborate framework which Jim had trimmed back to create a workshop which can be used in agile teams. Jim’s adaptation still needs work and by his own admission it’s a work in a progress, Ulwick’s book was only published at the end of last year. There were elements of Jim’s workshop which seemed an awkward fit, though the resulting Job Story is a great vehicle for getting a problem statement into a product delivery team. The more we test the technique here at HQ the more refinement we can make.

I’ll definitely be back to UX London and hope to see you there in 2018.

Read my thoughts on Day 1, Product and Day 2, Service.

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