presenting and such – week 14

This past week we completed our design and did our presentation.

I am a bit disappointed in how we presented. We are very confident in our design and the rationale behind it. Of course, there is always room for improvement on a design, but I think the idea is interesting and our current iteration does help solve the problem we are addressing.

The flash project embedded in our power point didn’t load, but I don’t think that was such a big deal. Technical issues will arise all the time, and I think we didn’t let it stop us. Mostly, I felt we didn’t give enough time to practice and we didn’t do a strong enough attention getter. Our last presentation we actually did a scenario right at the beginning which drew the audience in. One thing that I know was different was that we were required to present our concept first last time, and doing that automatically puts the excitement right at front. We should have done a similar quick scenario to stage our problem and concept.

Personally, my attention was focused on a different portion of the project. I think that might be an issue with dividing and conquering. We are all so focused on our individual parts that there might not be someone thinking about the project as a whole. I am ok with the end result here. We have a good start and I think we can make something with it apply to CHI.

Its interesting though, I have to present designs all the time at work. While we definitely don’t go into as much detail from an academic research perspective, we do have to provide a rationale for the decisions we make. My colleague might have spent months researching a particular area and my group is responsible for taking her research and building possible concepts on them. In those meetings we are not required to grab people’s attention, because they are getting paid to be there. Yet, we do have times when we present at a user’s conference or a marketing engagement where it is absolutely necessary to draw people in. So there are times when you have to put on a show, and there are times when you just have to be as informative as possible about what the design is trying to accomplish.

All in all, I think I learned a lot this semester. It was a good start to a larger experience. Most of what I learned is about pushing my own limitations and what that does to the people around me. I think experience will definitely help me in gauging what my little circle of the world can handle.

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