User Experience – A widely misused word

Recently I had been to a very famous restaurant in the Garden city of Bangalore. From many reliable sources, I had the steak is the best and the ambiance is excellent. Well, looking out for new places to grab a bite, I headed out to this ‘so called’ famous restaurant.

I was greeted nicely by a waiter at the entrance and he escorted to my table. I was just getting to love the entire ambiance when I saw the waiters bring Mortein mosquito coils. They placed it next to every table. At first, I thought it was fine but the smokes from the burning coil were too much to bear. I let it go and reminded myself that I’m here for the food and not to take such things into account. So I got to do what I came for and that was, eat some steak.

In no time I saw a hot, smoky steak brought towards me. I just couldn’t hold the excitement. It was juicy and well cooked. But then suddenly I noticed an extra piece of meat. A meat that was alien with the steak. I narrowed in closely and was disgusted to find a fly. Well as expected I got my plate changed. But I had lost the whole experience of eating and having a good time. I don’t think how much ever people tell me it’s a good place, the only place to get a good steak, I won’t go there.

As a user, I like to have good or at least pleasant experiences wherever I go. The whole experience was a bad one. This goes to anything and everything that we can get our hands on. Be it a gadget, a car, a watch, a shop etc.

Broadly speaking, the user experience is the experience a user goes through when he/she touches, sees, smells or feels anything. The emotions that run in the body at that time will determine whether it’s a good user experience or a bad one.

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This term User experience had been coined by Donal Norman also addressed as [highlight] Don Norman [/highlight] . He said,

“I invented the term because I thought the human interface and usability were too narrow. I wanted to cover all aspects of the person’s experience with the system including industrial design graphics, the interface, the physical interaction and the manual. Since then the term has spread widely, so much so that it is starting to lose its meaning”.

User experience has become very vital especially in technology. In the smart devices we carry, the websites we browse through, everything should have the element of user experience. It is very important that every organization, be it technology or advertising takes extra care to develop products and services that serve the users to a larger extent.

The time has gone when people said, “if it is working, it will do”. The functionality of the technology was important. But in recent times, that is not enough. Organizations have to realize that having different teams collaborate at the beginning of creating a product is ideally the best way to start the process. Getting ideas at the start from different departments, who eventually will work on the product, will help to eliminate or at least reduce errors and setbacks that can arise during the development process.

User experience in technology can be considered as, all aspects of business, functionality, design and navigation. How the user can navigate from one section to another, using limited time and mind is the key to having the best User Experience Design. Keep it simple with your products.

Article Credit: Deepak Mohan

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