Bloggers Trap

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Last night, after a full 10 out of 12 for our show next week, Beast on the Moon (10/12 means we were at school for 12 hours with 2 hours of break for meals), I watched Tim Brown’s Ted Talk: Designers– think big! While watching this I realized a few things about my team’s current design challenge on Healthy Living.

What I’ve realized is that I don’t think I truly “care” about the success of my prototype. Not to say that I don’t care about the environment or healthy living, but I mean I don’t think my team has really dug deep and found the core of our problem yet. I say this because I don’t yet have the feeling of, “we have to make this happen!”

I think a big part of this is because we don’t have a clear and focused, prototype, problem, or even user. (And the user, and empathy for a user, is what makes me care about what I’m working on.)

I was talking with one of my teammates today because he asked me what our conclusion was after an interview we did with a teacher last week. What we realized is that we didn’t really conclude anything specific. We did come up with a few How Might We statements, but I think they just were added to the lists on our team boards of various directions we could take.

Our team has discussed many different potential routes to explore. We’ve talked to many different people, and had many different insights found. For example, we never expected to end up talking about the preschool playground while working on a recycling challenge that started with an abandoned high school garden. Yet, we haven’t prototyped much of anything since the first few days when we were more told to prototype by our facilitators as a means of practice.

This Thursday we are suppose to be pitching an idea, but at this point, my team doesn’t have anything to pitch at all. I think my team has gotten caught in the trap of being so focused on wanting to design something, that we’ve lost sight of the user needs. I wonder if we have gotten in what I call the bloggers trap (because I often hear that this is why people don’t end up sharing blog post), where we get stuck wanting to create something big and amazing, and we forget that it is ok, and even necessary at times, to start with things that are small and may seem trivial now, but could have a large impact in the future once you add lots of little changes/ideas together, so in the end nothing happens out of fear of failure of it not being big and amazing.

I wonder how my team can get decisive and choose a user and brainstorm some “little” ideas for the purpose of moving forward and finishing something all the way through.

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