Today I watched a great video from a buddy (and old boss) of mine Barry Adams who was giving a talk at the recent Beltech event about User Experience;

It is a short video so I recommend you watch it, there is one thing I wanted to counter and I decided better of writing 5 million twitter posts to him so I figured I would write a quick blog post.

At one point Barry mentions that making tech without focusing on the user is a bad idea, and I would agree with him in 95% of situations, especially if you are a company who is making something on behalf of a client.

It is however 100% necessary in my opinion to sometimes just make tech for the sake of making tech, here is my brief list of why;

  • Tech is freaking awesome, web tech, hardware, software, it is all awesome and amazing. People into tech sometimes want to just create and make stuff. There doesn’t need to be any rhyme nor reason to it. Version control branches were made for a reason, use them! This can happen on an individual level or a team level which is why some companies sometimes release something ‘just because’.
  • Disruption cannot happen if you listen to what people currently want and need. In his talk Barry made reference to a handful of failed products, sure they failed, but what if the hadn’t? Genuine disruption (and not just iteration on a problem that is well received) comes from doing something that a person didn’t even realise they wanted or could do before.
  • Sometimes people and teams need something to act as a research piece, maybe they want to test the limits of some new language they are using or maybe they want to see what happens when they try and make something perform the way it isn’t meant to. These type of things are not possible by having the user as your core focus.

Again, great talk but I wanted to chuck my two pennies in!

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