Good things @ the Product semantics & Rapid prototypic...combined with semiotic engineering of user interfaces
As I may have told you; I am signed up at the Savonia Design Academy here in Kuopio to get more knowledge into my young mind. The main pre-organised course for me is Service Design and that is going well so far. Then I was offered the opportunity to choose ANY extra course I would like to take and guess what I chose!!
- Usability and semantics of user interface design (this is where the semiotic engineering of user interfaces comes from)..this I combined with
- Product semantics and rapid prototyping in user-oriented design methods
These 2 go hand-in-hand like a married couple (well, some married couples! hehehe..). The usability and semantics of user interface design is more theoretical and covers the stuff you need to know and reckon when starting a project for a user. The co-creations, the ways of gathering data in a user-oriented way, the goods of prototyping and so on. As you may have already noted, the language is Finnish for all undergrad classes but the lecturers are kind enough to google some material for me and put on my flash. I also take the powerpoint slides and translate them online later. This is a very interesting course from someone with a purely information technology mindset. it has shown me just how much a user's experience, even their emotions, are important to consider when designing a product for them. And it doesnt matter what product it is you are designing, it can be anything from this;
or this , this or even something as complicated as this concept;
The point is that a user has to be involved in all that you are trying to design for them, that way you get their points of view and end up coming with a better product and everybody is happy . Here is a video on one of the gurus of design thinking; Tim Brown;
Now the second part of this course is more practical. Today was my 1st class and we were in a computer lab. The language of delivery is Soumi of coz, but the software we used is in English (by the way, even Microsoft Windows used here is in Soumi! No English! but some of us wanna-be nerds know where to go and change the lingo!!)so I get to know which buttons to follow. Difficult, but doable. We used an open-source software called Kerkythea ( http://www.kerkythea.net). I am still new on the software but I aim to Ace it by the end of 2010 and even start using it in real-life projects. The brilliance of open-source software is that a free-sharing community always develops around it, people even upload their latest 3D inventions on the software site itself! Here is a few snapshots of what Kerkythea can do:
This is a good start for me in Finland, and I can feel very much that I will take something valuable back with me. My hope is that these courses will earn me a place in a user-driven design-oriented Information Technology department somewhere where I can add some input to what I have learnt. I aim to pursue the disciplines of user-oriented design methods further and enhance my IT background.
Till next time! Kiitos (Thanks!)....