People Interact

Blog about people-centered design by Lisa Chow and Sandra Sajonas.

Tag Archives: user-centered

From UX Study to UX Service: Using People-Centered Research Methods to Improve the Public Library Experience

We enjoyed talking about UX and libraries at the December 8th Driving Library Change with User Experience Design online conference. Here is our slidedeck and resources:

“From UX Study to UX Service: Using People-Centered Research Methods to Improve the Public Library Experience”

People-Centered Research and Analysis Methods (Monthly Method Spotlight)
Our monthly method spotlight features one people-centered method each month that you may find helpful for your work.

Informal Risk Assessment 
Risk = Likelihood * Impact
(For example, Likelihood of issue happening * Impact of issue on the project)

Books on Design Thinking, User Experience, and Project Management

  1. This is Service Design Thinking by Marc Stickdorn and Jakob Schneider
  2. The Ten Faces of Innovation: IDEO’s Strategies for Defeating the Devil’s Advocate and Driving Creativity Throughout Your Organization by Tom Kelley and Jonathan Littman
  3. The Design of Everyday Things by Donald Norman
  4. A Project Manager’s Book of Forms by Cynthia Stackpole Snyder
  5. Project Management for the Unofficial Project Manager by Kogon, Blakemore & Wood
  6. DK Essential Managers: Project Management by Peter Hobbs

Visitor Friendly Golden State

IMG_20150424_104000On a recent family trip to California, there were several items I noticed making our trip easier.

1. A digital parking meter that can be paid with a credit card. Finally, no hunting around for quarters.

IMG_20150427_0703482. A charging station at Starbucks. Kill 2 birds with one stone; get your caffeine fix & charge your tech toys.

Of course I shouldn’t be surprised by the Golden State’s innovations when we were so close to Silicon Valley.

Wandering Librarian: Westport Library

The first library in our new series is in the quaint town of Westport, CT. I decided to pop in and see why the Westport Library is a finalist for the 2015 IMLS National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the highest honor given to museums and libraries.

Upon walking into the main area, I was flummoxed; they have an incredible MakerSpace. All I have to say is “they have robots!” westportrobotsBesides the robots, their MakerSpace is equipped with 3 3D printers and a Design-Thinking Center. Although after conversations with staff & patrons, the Design-Thinking Center seemed to be one of those timely grant initiatives that follow recent trends (all the buzz words were there; ideate, design-thinking, etc) but fail to capture the true purpose and objective of the trend.

Besides this detail, Westport has all the basics of a great library & them some. Overall, Westport is a user-centered library that pays attention to their patrons’ wants and needs.

Here’s a shortlist of some features that contribute to a great user experience:


  • digital lending library of ebooks, videos, films, music & audiobook
  • tech petting zoo
  • old fashion typewriter (yes, some people still want to use these)
  • phone/tablet charging station
  • public coat hooks (a small but thoughtful detail)
  • gift shop & cafe
  • self-checkout kioks
  • book a librarian services
  • print, scan & fax service that accept old fashion cash
  • wireless printing


Monthly Method Spotlight: Draw the Experience

Draw the Experience

draw the experienceWhen/why: Drawing an experience reveals how people conceive of and order their experiences or activities.

How: Invite participants to visualize an experience through drawings and diagrams.

Tips: This can be done formally or informally and even combined with other methods. Obviously, make sure to have various drawing supplies on-hand. Don’t let insufficient tools and materials limit the drawing experience.

Interested in using/applying these methods in your work? Contact us for more info.

DC: The Most User Friendly City in America?

During a recent visit to DC, I noticed several things that made me wonder if DC is the most user-centered city in the USA.

Here’s a list of things I discovered:

1. Bike Share Program.  Admittedly, DC is a bit late to the game in comparison to Europe, Asia and even smaller US cities like Portland.  However, NYC and LA are even later.  For $75/year, people can bike on demand.   Members can pick up a bike and return their bike at any of the stations throughout the city.

2.  Videophone Booth.  I saw this booth when I went to the public library. Deaf and hard-of-hearing users can place video relay calls to hearing friends, family, or business associates through an interpreter over a broadband Internet connection. This allows users to communicate in their first language: sign language.

Just as I was beginning to be impressed by DC’s ability to provide for its many users, I saw something that reversed my opinion.  A green “Do Not Enter” sign.  Need I say more?