A Relevant Talk

Just two quick points on this great talk by Mike Kruzeniski. First, this idea of developing new languages to describe decision points in the creation of technical things is quite good and brought home quite effectively by a guy who has some experiences doing just this within the beheometh Microsoft. Translating “P0, P1, P2” into Soul, Heart, Body is not just a simple variable replacement — these new words are precisely design shaping the creation of technical systems. Somewhere in between “design-led” fantasies of designing being in charge, and, for designers, the more grumbly — *we have no influence — gripes is this approach Mike talks about — closer to real pragmatic stuff, and about partnerships and learning together and the *good kind of manipulation of existing engineering practices and project management procedures.

Second point. I’ve been wrong to think that design-led creation of technology *stuff is the way of the future, and Mike’s experiences plus a couple of things here and there that I’ve experienced more directly are what make me certain I was wrong. Between knowing what it takes in practical terms to materialize an idea that won’t blow smoke when you plug in the power, and knowing that you can’t force someone to do something that they don’t believe in, especially if they are a technologist — well, the in-between is this idea of working together. No one wants to create a crap experience, but defining what is a good experience is what helps you get there.

Anyway. Listen to Mike’s talk and try to avoid wondering if his shirt was made from the same material they use for table clothes in pizza restaurants.