The overarching philosophy behind user-centered design

By Zarla Ludin ~ Zarla writes about the connection IT needs to have with Human Factors…


Human Factors: the overarching philosophy behind user-centered design. User-centered design is an iterative problem solving process that demonstrates a user’s limitations, abilities, and typical uses of an interface. Usability research is essential for information technology because it examines these aspects of the user and then implements them in the design. Without a focus on the user, information technology has the potential of being completely inaccessible to the average person.


Usability research begins with knowing who the user is. Once this is accomplished, the user’s intended goals from using the interface can be determined. From these goals, a usability professional can then figure out exactly what the user needs of the interface in order for the user to achieve these goals. For example, architecture software tends to be used by only one user type: architects. They may be using the software to create plans of a building. Because their goal is to come up with a true-to-life architectural plan, graphics and images are probably going to be an important element of the software. Although this may seem like common sense, it is often overlooked by designers and developers. Having the Human Factor perspective, as well as the user’s prospective, is essential in creating a successful product.


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The adventure called summer internship!

By Ravneet Kaur ~ Ravneet narrates her internship experience…


I joined the Day MBA program at the end of August 2006. No sooner had I started getting used to the new place, culture and program than I suddenly got a wakeup call – a Career fair, held at the end of September (mainly for full time jobs) made me aware that even though I was just in my first semester, I needed to get into internship search mode soon. I started the task of updating my resume according to the Bentley format. After few trips and emails to the career services, my resume was all set to go. Side by side, I started looking at internship opportunities posted on various company websites during November, since the e-recruiting website wasn’t showing much summer internships until then. However, in mid December, I saw postings for various IT internships and applied for them.


I got invited for first round of interview by Ernst & Young (E&Y), KPMG and Morgan Stanley. All the first round interviews were held on campus and went well. I then went to each of the companies offices for the second round. The Morgan Stanley second round was held at their New York office and the other two were in Boston. All of the interviews were mainly behavioral in nature and I was very excited to get internship offers from all three companies. After lots of contemplation on whether to move to NYC or not, I finally decided to stay in our dear old Boston and accepted E&Y’s offer for an internship positing in their Technology, Security and Risk Services (TSRS) area, for financial clients (FSO-Financial Services Office) in Boston.


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