In the previous video, we looked holistically at design and we saw that in the design process, the first step is to better understand people. We've chosen the examples in this video to illustrate key concepts of the thinking and learning part of the design process. One way to do this is through human-centered design. There are many different human-centered design methods that have their own applications with specific contexts. What they have in common though, is that they all look at the interaction between people and the products. In interaction design, the end consumers of the design products are commonly referred to as users. However, this is not always an accurate reflection of who is purchasing or engaging with the end design solution. In some cases, the user might not be the consumer of the product at all. For example, Facebook. Users on Facebook are different from the customers who are paying for the targeted advertising. The design of Facebook as a platform needs to consider and target both. These possibilities need to be considered when designing, and during the thinking and learning process. A key component of human-centered design is getting to know your user or customer. This can be done through interviews or questionnaires or through existing data that is available to you. To help consider these possibilities, we will now explore three useful tools that you can implement in your design thinking process. These are personas, extreme characters, and story boards. Personas are fictional characters used to represent typical users, customers or other stakeholders. Personas are created through the data that you have collected. They distill the information that is most pertinent to the design issues at hand. Personas allow us to engage socially and emotionally with the needs of the user and to include their voice within all phases of the design process. For example, giving a user motivations, frustrations, attitudes, goals, behaviors, and demographic information, illustrates more fully the user's needs and desires. Let's take a look at a persona called, Richard, who is 23 years old. Richard is a fictional character, used in this persona example. Richard is currently studying law at university and wants to become an environmental lawyer one day. He was born with cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair. There is only one bus route that he can take to get to university and it is frequently delayed and overcrowded. As a result, he often views lectures online instead of coming onto campus. Personas can be used to communicate user needs to the design team. This helps to troubleshoot issues before reaching further design stages. Let's look at the next tool, extreme characters. Extreme characters are a great method for extending your considerations beyond the needs of the typical and conventional user. Within the design process, it is easy and very common to focus on a particular target group and type of user. Trying to understand their specific problems, needs, and motivations. Although, this is a very important step, the insights gained from this one target group may be limited to a small set of emotions and practices. Thinking about design solutions for extreme characters, such as a secret service agent, encourages divergent thinking through defamiliarization. It encourages you to move outside of well-defined problem spaces, and therefore, to access a large spectrum of human emotions and practices. Let's take a look at an extreme character example now. This gangster has unique habits that are opposite to that of this extreme character, the Pope. By designing for both of these unique characters, it allows your design solution to address the needs of all characters in between the spectrum. Extreme characters with their unique and unusual habits, emotions, needs, and wants allow you to expand your set of concerns and discover new possibilities for design solutions, perhaps you hadn't thought of. This method allows you to think outside the box and uncover new innovative ideas, features, processes, or products. It can be used early on in the design process to identify new aspects of the problem and generate new design solutions. The rationale behind this process, is that these new design solutions, it can be fed back into the design process and may also be helpful for typical users. The last tool that we will look at, is storyboarding. In design, storyboards are used to visually explore the interactions between people and products or services. These can be used to represent a current or a future situation. Storyboards for current situations are effective for highlighting issues with current experiences. Storyboards of future or possible situations can be used for evaluating early concepts with other team members or prospective users, and for communicating concepts to others. Storyboards are like comics. They use a series of illustrations to tell a story. Speech and thought bubbles are used to represent dialogue and thought processes. Let's take a look at an example of a storyboard. As you can see from the example, the details in the storyboard focus the viewer's attention on the important parts of the scenario, such as one of the characters interacting with the design. Descriptions are used above or below the panel to explain the scene. The character within the storyboard should be based on either a persona or an extreme character that you have previously made. Characters in the storyboard can interact with each other, as well as the design that you're exploring. So, we've looked at personas, extreme characters, and storyboarding. All of these tools or methods can be used during the design thinking part of the process, to help you create innovative solutions. Next, we'll be looking at translating human-centered insights into innovative solution ideas. Enjoy.