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Hello Designers.

We are judged by how we look and no amount of religious/spiritual scriptures can change that approach of human mind. It’s the case both in real-life and the virtual ( IT ) life too. I may try to dis-regard it but the management shall be quick to point out facts. “Will you trust a policeman in dirty clothes? Will you trust a politician is western casuals? Will you? “. Its never easy to wrong the facts, and any attempt to do so makes me look plain silly 😛 . When I look at screens on web and try to discuss the same point it just seems so less important to the same group of people. “Screen design. Yes, its a nice to have feature. But, we need the functionality to be ready by the deadline. Customer does not need it”. Is a rule to applied differently? Is so, Is there any merit to the rule itself?

Screen design and design thinking is a fascinating concept which has brought life to the old and stubborn interface to SAP. The technology advancements and maturity of SAP has allowed us to think more about the possibilities of designing the interface. But, I as a programmer am lost. To me, when I am faced with the task to alter my design process based on the UX, my only references are a bunch of beautifully designed websites. Here is how I begin:

“Yes. My next screen should look like one of those flashy sites of Audi” 😎 .

“Wait, but I cannot copy the same design” 😕

“I am unable to find the same user interface elements used on this site” 😐

“Flash technology? Lord O Mightly, I am not supposed to use flash” 😯

Project Manager, comes in: “Look. You better get the site working by this date. Design? 😕 if you can do it great. But, if you mess up the site delivery date you will have to face the music and mind you the music won’t be good”. 😈

” Okay. Lets resolve that I will do the design approach for the next project at all cost.” 😐

” I shall crib about the lack of the management’s vision with like minded(cribbing) colleagues over the coffee” 😡

” Wow! I have so much potential and the whole system does not allow me to explore” 🙂

“I need to change my job/team” 🙁

“Life s**k*. Let’s go along with the team”. 😳

Mostly, the screen programmers are faced with the crisis of reference. How to we start about it? With no formal training/approach available at our disposal we are struggling to adopt this process in our screen design. As always a lighting struck( and hope it rains in near future 🙂 ).

I came across an interview of an experience designer and there was this innovative concept of human connection with your client. Approach your client and brand and ask them/help them identify a celebrity character who could re related to the brand/organization. Research about the character and identify the traits/characteristics which can be linked to the brand like colors, attitude, nature, achievements, image etc. Then, once the points are agreed with client, use them as your reference for your design.

Before you design your screen think of the colors which relate to your reference trait. Before you design the behavior of the application relate it to the reference trait. Before your design your error handling relate it to the reference trait. It is a very powerful and simple way of ensuring a design approach which will be relative to your client’s branch.

The approach need not be restricted to celebrities alone. It can be expanded to attributes, concepts, religion etc. It allows us to quantify the points to be inculcated in our design. It allows us to look at the design from the outside, from the client’s/User’s perspective. It assists in ensuring that our design is not our fancy imagination of UX but more relative to the real world and real people.

I for one, shall try it in my next app. Is that my promise? Well – ” * Conditions Apply “.

Regards,

Sharath

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