SIGIA-L Mail Archives: Re: SIGIA-L: Getting users to prioritize
Re: SIGIA-L: Getting users to prioritize
From: Peter Merholz (peterme_at_peterme.com)
Date: Sun Sep 09 2001 - 20:25:57 EDT
> My question to everyone is- how do we ask users which features are
> critical? If I ask users to suggest features they would like to see in a
> software planning program, they tend to have a difficult time coming up
> with more than one or two ideas.
I want to expand on Jonas' comment about features.
Don't ask users what features they want. Users are not designers, and should
not be expected to understand the implications of feature development. If
you ask them for what features they want, it'll undoubtedly be more than it
should be... Microsoft once seemed to add any feature asked for by their
customers (this was considered to be "responsive"), but it ended up with
software so feature-ridden that engaging in basic tasks (say, writing a
letter) was unduly burdened with commands.
Jonas mentioned getting at the users' goals, and Whitney mentioned tasks.
Both of these are far more important than having users prioritize features.
Users can prioritize and rank their tasks and goals with authority. It's
your job as a design to enable those tasks and goals through feature
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: Sun Nov 23 2003 - 22:54:48 EST