Process + Context Lecture 2

This pod discusses the process in planning for an interactive design, and also explains what context is, and how it can help you achieve a successful design.

The first half of the pod lecture discusses the advantages of project planning via pen to paper mediums, and the advantage of then putting these ideas in context – to the people who will potentially be influenced or affected by the outcome. Sarah discusses that project ideas start very low tech, to help understand, define and frame the problem. These early sketches also help identify what the problem is in the design, and what goals we are trying to achieve.

Part 2 of the pod discusses the concept of context


  • What people are trying to do
  • How they may try to do it
  • What gets in the way or what helps
  • Where they might be doing it

An example given includes checking if a payment went through via a laptop at home, compared to checking the balance of an account in order to purchase an item at the store. Both these examples have different urgencies, locations, times and devices. Thus, different context for use and of use.

Context helps define a situation, people and their needs to create interaction design that facilitate their behaviours. To help create context scenarios, you need to ask what is the situation?

  • What’s the setting or environment which the device or interface will be used?
  • Is it public or private? Is it conducive?
  • Who will be using the device or interface? Will it be shared?
  • How long will it be used for?
  • Does it need to be complex or simple?
  • What are the persons needs or goals?
  • Whats the urgency?

By understanding what a user needs, and using proper methods of problem solving, you can create successful interactions.


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