I grew up in Finland back in the days of rotary phones and floppy disks. I remember when my dad bought our first PC and wrote down instructions in a notebook for me on how to start a game or open an editor for writing letters. Even back then I was thinking that this shouldn’t be this hard. Even though I was only 8 years old and everything about a computer at home felt fascinating, it still felt stupid that we need to read instructions from a notebook on how to use this magnificent intelligent device. It. Should. Just. Work.
Fast forward to today. I have a degree in Interactive Technology. I’ve moved my life over to the States. I have worked as a designer in some of the biggest companies in the world and I’m still struggling with the same question over and over again: Why is it this hard to use this? Why do I feel stupid buying a simple plane ticket? Why can’t I, for the life of me, figure out how to change the batteries in this annoying toy? There is still work to be done here. As long as the user feels stupid using a system, there is fault in the system.
In addition to feeling stupid buying plane tickets, I spend my free time running, skiing or climbing after my kids. The outdoors (and dark chocolate) help me focus.