another first step

Until now the work that I did has been about creating prototypes for developers as a product of my user experience research. I love working with people, understanding their contexts and listening to their stories (demographics and the sociologically significant data). Giving this sociological perspective to the stories has been the process I followed.  In the past, I have interviewed bikers, job-seekers, administrators, patients to understand their user pain points. I study their specific context, look into the related stories in other demographics, look at other societal contexts to understand how things are different and if there is options of adaptability in the current context. A contextual review, a heuristic analysis, a comparative assessment and data analysis is what is required to get to the pain point.

The work I do is possible due to an immediate empathy that I am able to advance to a context. I put myself in the users shoes then calculate and assess what their story looks like in terms of technology, time, need and usage. I then find what’s lacking in the context of an interface and a design and take it from there. To me clients/users are people first, always!

Some of the outcomes I provide are personas, journey maps and solution prototypes to developers. These days however, fixing the problems with technology is a way I do it. I went back to school to learn to code and I am loving every minute of it.

My background always had development tools but I am now a certified developer.

Author: hema

I am a sociologist turned UX researcher and front-end web developer. I am also a translator of notes that remain in the margins to bring the user of technologies into sharper focus. I also use the term community researcher to talk about the work I do. In the past, as a Director and user experience lead at Code for Princeton I worked with non-profits, community groups, users, and subject matter experts to identify areas of need. I translated this into conversations with brigade members, developers, potential users, and other stakeholders. The applied ethnography and social research skills got me to meet with a diverse set of people across the broad middle class spectrum in Urban India. Living and working in New Jersey for the past several years has given me a great breadth and width of understanding and engaging with people adding critical diversity to my bracket of "users" and experience all rolled in one.

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