user centered design -> overlapping circles -> boundary selection
3 Oct 2006 - 4:15pm
8 years ago
I'm working on some product strategy at the moment.
Imagine a scenario like this:
- Book publishers need a system that lets them communicate with the
Warehouse and Authors.
- The Warehouse needs a system that lets them communicate with Publishers,
but they also have need a system to communicate with Stores and manage
If you build the system for the Publishers, then the Warehouse now has to
use two systems, which inevitably are going to have a lot of overlapping
To put it abstractly,
- User A sits at the center of a circle of concerns that includes User B
- User B sits at the center of a different circle, but theirs also includes
The product starts out being designed for User A, but it doesn't seem fair
in a way to ask or require User B to use this system that then is not a
complete picture for them.
Adding the features for B for the system intended for A seems like a
The question is: on what principles to base the products boundaries?
Strategically this leads to a question of which systems to compete with
(subsume) vs. interface. And if to interace, then whether communication
should be one-way or two-way?
Eugene Chen | User Experience Research, Design, and Strategy
mobile 415 336 1783 | fax 240 282 7452
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