Weekly Braindump #4

Weekly Braindump is a curated list of things I’ve worked on, thought about, listened to or read during the last 7 days.

I’ve been working on…

  • Training (well, more like public relations really) on some new systems we’ve recently launched. Up take has been slow, so it’s been a bit of an exercise in understanding where that resistance is coming from and building trust for (honest) constructive feedback. This would make a good reflective case study in why starting with user needs is important.
  • Spent the best part of a day just trying to get Windows Pro 10 installed on a single laptop. Tell me again why we persist with full blown operating systems for most people? Is there an 80/20 rule for people who could function perfectly well with a docked Chromebook or iPad?
  • Writing SFTP scripts to automate some back end processes between a couple of different systems. AUTOMATE ALL THE THINGS! (which might be one of my mantras for this year)

I’ve been thinking about…

  • Lots of post GovCamp Cymru chin stroking. I didn’t have any huge epiphanies — but it did put more meat on the bones of things kicking around my head. I also came away with a broad feeling of “talk is cool — but I need to start doing sh*t!”.
  • The distance between the people/person creating the system to the people/person using it seems critical. The bigger the distance, the more likely there’s a lack of empathy & understanding between the two. Is there a name or term for this?
  • People will put up with a really (like.. REALLY) ugly user interface if it fulfils a specific user need. Conversely then, a well designed user interface won’t fly if it doesn’t meet a defined user need.

I’ve been reading…

I’ve been listening to…

  • Freakonomics — Why are we still using cash?
  • Basic Income Podcast — An overview of basic income.
  • Open Data Institute : Friday Lunchtime Lectures. Why joined up data is a political not technical challenge.

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