After reading Brown and Wyatt's Design Thinking for Social Innovation, I quickly connected this idea of thinking through the user's actual needs first, as a similar process to what I have been using to come to the final ideation of the last few projects I have worked on in class. Whether it is information design, an app, or some sort of program used for people to obtain clean water in a foreign country, thinking about the process of the user is a vital aspect. It is easy for designers to jump into not only visual aspects of a design or product, but even the overall idea because of assumptions and habit. However, once the users process is taken into consideration, this is when the product obtains it's highest amount of usage. This article and its explanation of the "design thinking" process, is reflected currently in a program my classmates and I are testing out for our capstone class. Helium, which is currently in beta, is a program that allows professionals and students alike to make decisions and have conversations based off of poles, ideas, collaborations, and charts, all in one place. Though I have not used it extensively, our class is currently testing it for a project. As the "users" in Artefact's design thinking process, we are responsible for sending our feedback of this product in order to improve it's user experience. Our feedback is a direct reflection of how design thinking, even in the prototype stage, leaves room for constant improvement and consideration of the user. Good products, no matter how beautiful they look, only truly last if the user is able to seamlessly use them in a productive and uninterrupted manner. IDEO, who created this "design thinking" process explains this method as something which is "about empathy for people and for disciplines beyond one’s own. It tends to be expressed as openness, curiosity, optimism, a tendency toward learning through doing, and experimentation." (Design Thinking For Social Innovation, 34). This informational design piece below, by Curiousity Design Research, though not completely parallel with the steps described in IDEO's Human Centered Design Toolkit, allows us to quickly grasp this detailed and thoughtful mechanism of design.
Brown, Tim, and Jocelynn Wyatt. "Design Thinking For Social Innovation." Stanford Social Innovation Review (2010): 31-35. Print.