Sunday, December 14, 2008

User Testing EVERY DAY

Meetup's Dead Simple User Testing - Boing Boing: "Obstacles to getting real feedback are now mainly cultural, not technological; any business that isn't learning from their users doesn't want to learn from their users."

Friday, December 12, 2008

Search is politics

Speaking of superheroes, please read this story by Peter Rukavina in which our hero tries to make public corporate information better searchable and more usable to the public only to have the government close off the means to such access.

Play it forward, Sam

The first time that my husband, myself and my a little-older-than newborn son went outside after coming home from the hospital, was for breakfast at The Lumberjack. Being a damn cute baby, our son got lots of attention from the few customers and wait staff that were in on that quiet Tuesday morning. Halfway through the meal, the waitress topped up our coffee cups and informed us that the two middle aged women who had just been sitting at the table next to us, had paid our bill just before leaving.

"Aw, that's sweet", I told the waitress. But as soon as she was out of earshot, my sleep-deprived reptile self hissed at Greg, "What?! Do they think we're poor?! They shouldn't give money to us! We have money! They should give their money to poor people!"

This is what came to mind as I was checking out the beta version of Akoha: "the world’s first social reality game where you can earn points by playing real-world missions with your friends". Now, I have to admit that I have a fondness for alternative reality games and so I am tempted to join into this one, especially as the cost of entry is a measly $5 (*including* shipping and handling). And, as an aspiring superhero, I want to do good in this world. But when I review the missions in the Akoha starter pack such as "Send Drinks to a Couple in Love", I just want to gag.

Like a proper game, a player must be willing to endure small pains for larger gains in the future so perhaps missions for advanced players will be more appealing. There's only one way to find out and that's to play. So I have made my decision:

I'll play if you play. Are you in?