Internet Xperiences by Diego

Who controls the present, controls the past. And who controls the past, controls the future.

Archive for March, 2009

Social Network Analysis tools

Posted by Diego on March 30, 2009

pajek_imdb

What have in common Ljubljana and Maryland? Both have developed a software to analyze networks!

On one hand, Adam Perer, Ben Shneiderman and Cody Dunne have developed for HCIL a software called Social Action. This is a social network analysis tool focused on visualization and statistics information with powerful and intuitive results.

On the other hand, Vladimir Batagelj and Andrej Mrvar developed Pajek in Ljubljana University. This software is specially useful when analyzing large networks. For now, up to 10 million nodes, which is not bad at all… but they are already working on a 64 bits version which will allow to deal with really huge networks, just depending on how much available memory you do have on your computer.

In my opinion, it would be very interesting to combine and study joint application of both tools to some use cases.

 

Posted in Social Web | Leave a Comment »

Placement of customer experience at the heart of all projects

Posted by Diego on March 24, 2009

never-surrender

As forrester reports in a recent document research , it is very likely that companies will try to find in the future a balance between traditional brand messaging and user experience. The keys to sucess are stated as follows:

  1. Use of a collaborative approach in project management.
  2. Early inclusion of digital specialists.
  3. Placement of customer experience at the heart of all projects.

This is what some people still do not see very clearly. No matter what kind of thing you are developing: a Facebook app, a website, or a product, a service, whatever… the customer experience should be transversal to the whole process, from the evaluation and conceptualization, through the definition, development and testing, and even further along the support and thus implementing  improvements and corrections.

It is the only way to get that big WOW that you are expecting from your customers.

And all of the above it is more likely achievable in a collaborative work environment, where ideas are not “patented” but set up to the wild for their mutation and spread.

Thus, the cultural change again… it seems to be unavoidable.

Do not forget: your culture is your brand .

Posted in Information design, Social Web, User experience | Leave a Comment »

Pedestrian maps

Posted by Diego on March 18, 2009

United maps is trying to fill the gap in orientation services. This means that maps work OK when you’re driving a car, but… what happens when you walk to get it or when you leave it and need orientation via a mobile device?

Maps on a human scale are needed, not only for street but on a local and hyperlocal level. Not only showing streets but pathways and trails, public transport and bicycle options. Here in Germany bicycle is an accesible and frequently used mean of transport!

I share with you Stefan Knecht‘s presentation lectured at Telematics Munich 2008.

Posted in User experience | Leave a Comment »

Writing skills essential to point out structural failures

Posted by Diego on March 17, 2009

packing

I really like the packing technique for travelling that a friend of mine has: “When i’ve finished packing, i just remove half of the clothes and then i know i am ready to leave.”

Along my proffesional career I found really useful to summarize the key points in both written and verbal communications and tailor it to recipient needs. Believe it or not, we always tend to include information that is not useful to our adressee, so let’s think less about we want to deliver and think more about what we want him to receive.

So, as my wise friend, when i am ready to send an important email, i just cut it to a half.

And i proved it to be one of the most effective writing skills that i make use of!

As said, it is extremely important to know the needs and abilities of your addresee/s in order to deliver an effective message.

This should be concise and tailored to the recipient in order to minimize cognitive load. this is extremely important and moreover when arguing structural failures within an Organization which seem sometimes unplausible to point out.

For further reading, i can reccomend the following Piaget’s Stages of Cognitive Development and How to Develop Strong Thesis Writing Skills.

Posted in Business strategy | Leave a Comment »

Leading through uncertainty

Posted by Diego on March 13, 2009

 uncertainty

When the range of possible futures confronting business is huge like nowadays, Companies should prove their value to the market improving customer experience, social brand awareness and being flexible enough to hear and serve appropriately and on-time to customer demands.

A key driver for these kind of purposes use to be research, but unfortunately this field is in many cases too far away from Business Intelligence Departments, and far far away from Marketing and Sales Departments that can trigger the down-to-earth changes.

When the uncertainty reigns, the best we can do is test, observe and analyze and continuosly improve our way of doing business. This environment is not about sitting placidly in a comfortable chair but getting into the crowd to hear real voices that lead business plans to solve customer needs.

We, as business influencers, have the responsability to influence these changes. I can summarize al above as a very well know sentence:

Focus on the user and all else will follow

Posted in Business strategy | Leave a Comment »