First customer call!

What I love about user research is that I always learn something that surprises me and today’s call with a Mifos customer in Lebanon was no exception.  After working with the demo software and reading the user manual, I was beginning to formulate some user “personas” who are typical of the people who use the Mifos software and why.

Mifos Home Page

Mifos Home Page

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What isn’t forbidden is compulsory

As a usability specialist and user experience designer, I live to make things easier for the user.  It’s what I do.  I hate products and processes that are difficult for no apparent reason.  Unfortunately, there are plenty of them roaming our world just waiting to pounce – causing anxiety, sleepless nights, or worse, feelings of inadequacy.

The New Yorker Magazine, Feb. 16, 1976

The New Yorker Magazine, Feb. 16, 1976

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Into Africa (and India)

Passport ImageMy passport is on it’s way to San Francisco to get an Indian Visa attached to it.  I hate letting my passport travel alone – I worry for it’s safety.  I’m crossing my fingers that it arrives home safely soon and then we can travel together!  Travel planning is in the works – I will be meeting with MFIs (micro finance institutions) that use the Mifos in Bangalore, India and Nairobi, Kenya to better understand what they need from the Mifos software.

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Officially part of the Mifos community!

My bio is now added to the Mifos community blog.  So happy to join the team!

Not much to report at the moment:

  • Beginning travel arrangements to visit Mifos clients in India and possibly Kenya so I can better understand how they use the Mifos software and under what conditions (i.e. constant interruption? slow internet? language difficulties?)
  • Formulating questions to ask users from my reading of the functional specs and user manual.

vMeeting Mifos

Screen Shot 2013-03-19 at 11.43.38 PM  “Met” the Mifos team today.  When I say “met”, I mean that I talked with them via Skype while looking at little pictures of them.  The community manager is on the West Coast, the architects are in Ireland, and the engineers are in India.  A real “global” workforce.

There should be a word for “meeting” someone electronically.  E-meet?  iMeet?  vMeet?  (That would be a virtual meeting for you non-VMware folk :-))  There’s gotta be a good word for this that’s not already been coined.  Suggestions?