A lost cause : the ever improving developer's map

M. Kjaersgaard, J. Pedersen, J.P. Djajadiningrat

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

    1 Citation (Scopus)


    In this paper we describe our work in the Danfoss User Centred Design Group on the design for a frequency converter, a device which controls the speed of an electric motor. A significant part of this project lies in getting to know often unfamiliar users and use contexts. We feel that developers often look at the user's problems through developers eyes rather than through the user's eyes. Having researched and actively used ethnographic field methods over the past few years, we argue that it is necessary to create an awareness of this perspective issue, its consequences for how we interpret field sessions and its influence on product development. We present a collection of existing methods that can be applied to challenge our perspective as developers and to shift our view to that of the users. To illustrate how these methods may lead to a deeper understanding we start with a portrait of one of our informants. We present two provotypes to show how we try to incorporate the users' perspective in our design solutions. Finally, we reflect on the interaction language which products speak and argue that usability studies without awareness of the perspective issue make products more clear for the developers only.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationHuman factors in computing systems : proceedings of the CHI conference, 2003, April 5-10, Ft. Lauderdale, FL, USA - extended abstracts
    Place of PublicationFt. Lauderdale, USA
    PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery, Inc
    ISBN (Print)1-58113-637-4
    Publication statusPublished - 2003
    Event21st Annual ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI 2003 - Fort Lauderdale, United States
    Duration: 5 Apr 200310 Apr 2003
    Conference number: 21


    Conference21st Annual ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI 2003
    Abbreviated titleCHI 2003
    Country/TerritoryUnited States
    CityFort Lauderdale


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