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Personas? Ikke pokker?

37signals liker ikke Personas.

Q: Do you use formal personas when thinking about the users of a new app?
A: We don’t use personas. We use ourselves. I believe personas lead to a false sense of understanding at the deepest, most critical levels.

Personas don’t
Personas don’t talk back. Personas can’t answer questions. Personas don’t have opinions. Personas can’t tell you when something just doesn’t feel right. Personas can’t tell you when a sentence doesn’t make sense. Personas don’t get frustrated. Personas aren’t pressed for time. Personas aren’t moody. Personas can’t click things. Personas can’t make mistakes. Personas can’t make value judgements. Personas don’t use products. Personas aren’t real.

People do
People talk back. People answer questions. People have opinions. People can tell you when something just doesn’t feel right. People can tell you when a sentence doesn’t make sense. People get frustrated. People are pressed for time. People are moody. People click things. People make mistakes. People make value judgements. People use products. People are real.

37signals får imidlertid pepper i kommentarene.

You don’t value personas in your software development process because you already have a deep understanding of your users. You think like they do, speak their same language and share many of their same needs.

I know you guys don’t do client work anymore, but what if you were building software for people who were very different from you, who used words you didn’t understand or who had needs that didn’t match your own experiences? What if you were designing software for heart surgeons or water treatment workers or air traffic controllers?