Donald A. Norman har skrevet en tankevækkende artikel om balancen imellem at foretage research og være skabende/producere. Mine egne erfaringer er at det er en vekselvirkning imellem de to der skaber de bedste resultater.
Han skriver på sin hjemmeside:
Think before acting. Sounds right, doesn’t it? Think before starting to design. Yup. Do some research, learn more about the requirements, the people, the activities. Then design. It all makes sense. Which is precisely why I wish to challenge it. Sometimes it makes sense to act first, think afterwards.
In the real world of product development, time is always short and budgets limited, so it is almost impossible to start with research. “Yes,” the product manager will say, “I know we should do some research first, but we don’t have time, we are too far behind schedule. But for the next project, we will start with research, OK?” It never happens. The next project will also start out with no time, behind schedule. In fact, let me create a law:
Norman’s Law of Product Development: A project is behind schedule and over its budget the day it is started.
Today we teach the importance of doing design research first, then going through a period of ideation, prototyping and iterative refinement. Lots of us like this method. I do. I teach it. But this makes no sense when practical reality dictates that we do otherwise. If there is never enough time to start with research, then why do we preach such an impractical method? We need to adjust our methods to reality, not to some highfalutin, elegant theory that only applies in the perfect world of academic dreams. We should develop alternative strategies for design.