Working with the User

In the world of IT, the equivalent of the test screening audience consists of the sponsors who commission the shop’s development efforts and the users who will put them to work. Typically, however, the role of this IT "audience" is viewed differently. In Hollywood, the audience is always on everyone’s minds. By contrast, in IT, the audience is kept at a distance; no one really wants to engage the users until the production process has just about finished. Although this practice is intuitively counterproductive, it’s nevertheless popular, in part because of its practicality and convenience and in part stemming from the preference of many users. A typical development shop will usually engage with its users at two points in ...

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