Lars Perkins – Honey Can You Help Me Turn on the TV?

thanks good microphone is working I just have to do a couple of housekeeping things here to start my lawyer is tell me I have to do this given that there are lay people in the audience it’s a matter of personal protection it will only take a second and rest assured it’s just a disclaimer my lawyer says I have to give before every speech I give and I think it’s important for this one it answers a lot of questions before they get out okay now as I try to reassemble my audio will get back good so I’d like to thank Ken for his invitation to speak here and his gracious hospitality and that of the ihmc on my first visit tip Pensacola you and when I learned the history of this business I got a little nervous about being called a serial anything as I recall someone else who was cereal in another dimension who had a hopefully different experience although and that’s I hope if things go better for me than they did for him so Alice I have got a couple of our couple board disclaimers I been up since midnight because I’m the world’s best for crash Snyder and the internet is the best single device ever created to enhance procrastination so I’m pretty tired and I might forget things and if I do call them out for example if I start using vowels for example just let me know I could be very confusing so this is all about how today’s technology makes us feel stupid and it’s driven really very strongly by my own experience that if I find something hard to do and I like figuring things out I like puzzles and I like technical puzzles but if it’s hard for me it must be impossible for you if and that’s not it that’s not a comment of intelitan telligence it’s a comment about my perverse sense of enjoyment I find and I find pleasure in making things work up to a point and it just makes me a little bit crazy that you know when you buy a new TV basically this is the first thing they want to tell you is the the nine thousand different ways this TV is going to kill you if you don’t do exactly the right thing I mean think about it’s the most important thing the thing you hope you just spent your three thousand dollars on this flat screen what they want to tell you is that this thing may kill you and you better know its serial number or you know God forbid the police come and get you there’s also of course I had asked lamer that I have to tell you that the state of California is determined that this flexure maybe he caused board and brought in certain individuals and disclosure of that fact will result in imprisonment not to exceed a long time but still inconvenient now the last thing I want to do before I get on with the substance of the presentation is that before I get on with a substance of the presentation I want to just talk a little bit about the bio that that Ken gave because some of you may have been lured in by false pretenses on that bio you know on the internet you can sort of be anything and this is the filmmaker that I am on the internet this is my movie it’s the lost skeleton of cadavra it’s a very scientific movie discussed in the resurrection of a skeleton who returns to rule the world through his maniacal control of the rare element atmosphereum believe it or not I recommend it highly but believe it or not it was picked up by Sony Pictures but many of you probably don’t know that you know my from my meet other major a film role which was as the special thanks in section of the making of the monkeys made for TV documentary so but if either of those if anybody if anybody feels misled by the promotion for the for the talk I will refund your money 10 times over okay i’m also an explorer you can hear me you can see me here exploring the the sky some some of you may notice in I am a pilot although although for six

months after this parrot have taken this picture was taken the FA wouldn’t let me fly um ok so I grew up and I grew up with strange questions like you know why is it important to break glass when things are on fire I mean is there something about broken glass that’s going to help you in a fire or is there a magical property of glass that puts out fires you know I kind of do what they were saying you know but it was why don’t they just tell you you know with case of fire put it out you know part of putting it i was breaking the glass so i started to think about how instructions and messager are conveyed to people even at a very young age and I wish now show you me at a very young age ok there I am programming away in 1979 on my alt air computer they built as a high school science project in my basement in 1975 and then I went into the workforce of 1979 because I realized if I went to school there going to teach me Fortran on punch cards and I just build something in my basement was ten times more powerful than what the school had I figured this is where the action was so I think I better stay there hope that the other picture here to the right is I just put up because it’s I just happen to find this picture there of course is the legendary ASR 33 teletypewriter which was the standard for input/output to computers for so long but standing behind is al Pepin when Al Pepin was a technician at honeywell corporation we actually was the technician who built the first ever prototype at honeywell of a computer terminal that displayed not on paper but on a video screen so but seriously but seriously folks this is what my career really looks like i used to fix machines weather machines for four dollars and eight cents an hour way back then and then moving up my hair got grayer and I went for Google and they paid me a little more than four dollars in eight cents an hour minimum wage has gone up in the meantime and done a lot of other things in between including starting a bunch of businesses for idea lab so I’m just I am a serial entrepreneur which means I I go I stay with a business it’s like serial monogamy being with somebody until you can no longer being with somebody faithfully to you no longer stand it anymore so see a serial a serial entrepreneurship is being with a company until it makes you until you feel like it’s not fun anymore which usually happens around 40 employees and people want to talk about pay raises and things like that so I like really early stage businesses and I’ve gotten old enough and dumb enough to just focus on that so the first act of my presentation to you is going to be called it’s not you it’s not you just be reassured what is happening is not because of you but to understand why it’s not you we have to understand sort of how we came to this place and how absolutely broken it is i mean we could all have a group therapy session we could talk about this together but i want to make sure you leave this part of it knowing it’s not me i’ll tell you about a nine-year-old kid who has an experience with technology you won’t believe but i’ll take it back to the good old days what are the good old days so so this is the instruction manual is I tell you this were the good old days well first one dimension it also required an oscilloscope to get the machine to start working the first place so i guess the usability and the memorization of a certain number of manually entered key switch patterns to get fuckt machine to start up but in any case you get your manual you load up your your programming language on a cassette tape but the best part is you open that manual up and says if any problems with our encountered feel free to call us at this number the software Department is an extension 3 and the authors of the basic interpreter Bill Gates Paul Allen and Monty data davidoff will be glad to assist you now 30 years later the only question I have is who is Monty davidoff and and my advice would be don’t follow his stock picks he’s the guy in the back on ah you’re just about a couple of kids this is going nowhere i’m going back to raytheon now this is what we have in ok let’s go k so now this is what we see what I go into my hotel room that’s a phone I mean it’s a phone that’s so hard to use they have to be late they have to put labels on YouTube you use the phone push line one or two well if I have to push one weren’t you wouldn’t make one of them always pushed you know at least then it would work always why do I have to make that choice and what are all these little pictograms with no I you know what you know what happens if i wanted to dial 911 or as I heard Alex Alec Baldwin the other day on TV say call nine one to call nine one two and his assistants at nine 12 what’s 9 12 he says 911 for rich people but but should you like this kind of technology don’t worry you can get it for your home it’s it’s really really nice simple to

use it’s just an example of UI interface just run amok we do it because we cannot because it’s any good but you I come bad you I comes in other flavors too sometimes we give information that you don’t need that’s annoying to me it’s like I get it you know I get an insert clasp into metal buckle okay been there so sometimes we get messages that are redundant this is one of my favorites oh okay oh but does that mean the but this is so funny because it’s ambiguous does it mean that this switch will make you go up and this one will make you go down it’s like if you just if you took the arrows away it would be clearer you know but sometimes but sometimes you see the designers are not just uh overloading I’m making mistakes like this they tease us they make me till they make you feel like it’s going to be better like this happened to me Microsoft Windows just the other day says windows cannot connect up a rager I’m like okay oh but look at this see the details great I’m going to get some details I’ll be able to fix this here’s the details operation failed with error 0x 0002 you know so here you you’re like Joe Kamaka oh no not operations it was 003 I know it or here’s one of my favorite I just used I use products all the time and everyone’s to talk while I just have to grab a screen because it’s just my jaw drop sometimes I laugh depends on what time of the day is this my favorite messages please help why didn’t you upload any pictures clip cancel to tell us that makes sense right cancel to tell I don’t don’t give me a button that says tell us why you didn’t upload give us feedback wait on black yo kick click cancel to tell us and there’s no cancel button that’s why I didn’t upload any pictures your buttons don’t do what they say are good they’re going to do so anyway that’s kind of the state of my world but I started to get interested than this not just as a novelty when I realized I travel a lot and every morning starts with a mystery you know what the mystery is every morning how do you have turned the shower okay now here’s a Majora’s a thing that the majority of us do every single day and we haven’t figured out how to tell somebody if right to make it warmer is less gonna make it cold it doesn’t Lee now we got a guy on the moon you know it doesn’t seem that hard in fact I’m going to tell you this about Pensacola I saw the best shower control this morning that I’ve ever seen I knew it was right to turn to get it hot and left it cold it was a beautiful shower experience but this last shower is I could believe it they stenciled instructions on how to use the shower don’t start somewhere doing anything somebody’s going I don’t know I can be sitting there sopping wet without your reading glasses go Wow oh and what a way to start your day you know with this you know figuring out a shower and a shower has a characteristic we’re to talk about more to it’s called high latency in other words when you try it and turn it to the right you have to wait now what how long get to wait 5 seconds 10 seconds 15 seconds then you don’t get you then you go the other way and it still doesn’t get hot like well maybe I didn’t wait long enough of the first one what I mean it’s not about computers I mean what’s up with that it is this a faucet what was wrong with one the snail able to H and one this label Casey and you turn them and it mixes in your fine anyway so then I decided all right the world’s gotten bad here i’m going to start a project oh I’m doing the shower faucets again so I didn’t mean to do that i had my wild gesticulations I did something then I decided I travel a lot I’m going to do every time I get into a rental car it has the wrong time I’m going to set the time of any rental car of every rental car I go in soon okay it’s just gonna be a mission does I want to figure out how to do it can’t use the manual little sit little entertainment and Ed you know there’s a lot of different ways to set the time in a rental car as i have found out but for the most part it can be done it can be done I don’t have a college degree but even without one and maybe even with one it can be done so I set my sights higher i said i’m going to tackle the Great Flood frontier I’m going to go to the clock radios that are in the hotel and I refuse to look at him a lot of these have got stickers on the side that tell them I tell you how to use them you know which so I’m going to look at those but and I was again managed to do everyone get what every

one of those right until july eight 2011 New York City the grand hyatt hotel I’m at the G diva 300d I had met my match the Geneva 300d is a beautiful looking device it can hold your ipod you may notice that it only has one vaguely visible display that’s his ipod here there are occasions when you want to know the time even when you’re playing your ipod but we’ll leave that behind when the ipod was removed it actually did show the time it just was over an hour and a half wrong I took a look at it I couldn’t even find any buttons on the device sure enough this is a beautiful European design and all the buttons are hidden carefully hidden so the whole thing is like a you know like Tutankhamun’s tomb with secret codes and things okay but I’m going to figure this out I’m bomb waving my hands over just trying to get that time right I gave up the first day so you know what it did the next morning for eam it woke me up and not only me my family we’re up at 4am okay all right all right all right Jen you’ve a 300-day I give up I’m going to look at the instructions that are paste it to your side so I look at these instructions I follow them to the letter I’m very good at following instructions and they don’t work now I’m really like I all bets are off I’m going to my court of last resort of going to the Internet I’m going to google the user’s manual for this thing okay and there it is and of course this you know the same experience if you know if this is going to kill you if you do it wrong it’s at that time wrong you’re not prepared for it even except for their license agreement we’re quite likely to sue you and your heirs and the signees and so forth so I find this page i’m looking around I’m looking in the index at the time can’t find it anywhere can’t find it anywhere but I’m in a faux time in PDF reader so I can search by word so again I can search through the user may find out what setting the time I find it here it is here are the words adjust how it will verify that the remote control works adjust the clock press the key of the remote control now I want to ask you what kind of person in hyatt buys a radio for their hotel rooms that requires a remote to set the time don’t you think you’re never going to have a power failure and I could lose remotes those things aren’t going to run out of batteries you think your maids are gonna be able to set the time it’s impossible so that was that was my match but based on these instructions i realized the time was unsettle it was an unsolvable problem unless I way to purchase a remote somehow so I just unplugged a thing but that’s not the end of the story because you know a week later in the mail I was fortunate enough to get a survey from high at asking me about my experience of course first it wants to know what language I speak Willis he sent me the email in English you know you probably should know if then it wants to know if I stayed at the hyatt in New York what’s my access code because he this is like my bank account this is my deepest secrets i’m giving you then it wants to know if I stayed at the vet at state at the New York hide yeah that’s why you’re sending me the survey right and so we wants to know where I had my afternoon snack how am I often I use these restaurants did I did was it was it at the high at New York was I satified some nice satified vyvanse or anything not said about satisfied it says why weren’t you will completely satisfied I want you to tell me that on each of these restaurants what did you do did you it scare but the quality or stay what about the safety and softness of the of the cushions and finally I just say I’m skipping I want to get to the point where it says can you tell me something more you know anything about your say we’d like you to know it’s the only thing i want to do i’m so pissed off now no you can’t you gotta answer every question i mean this is worth this is the worse than the DMV you know I’ve got one question no you don’t you know it’s no you don’t you got to go fill up form trip then they’re trying to get question at this point like I’m like hi it’s super puba platinum gold level guy you know and I’m like thinking of my reasons not to stay at this hotel again so I fired fired hired or I didn’t actually so anyway that’s what that’s a stupid sort of experience of just a really bad and we’ll talk about a little bit later I don’t we’re going to run out of time but i’m going to move quickly but the issue is it’s not just about the experience you have with a device you’re experiencing the brand your experience the hyatt brand and every touch point of that brand with you as a consumer ought to feel consistent it ought to have high quality from the time being set correctly through respecting your you know a clean room etc to the to the survey everything should correlate it didn’t but i also don’t want to place all the blame we do

have a certain was things have happened very rapidly so they have outpaced some of our ability i mean some of you may have remembered receiving keyboards that didn’t have the any key on them did it this happen anybody okay if it happened to a lot of people a lot of people didn’t get the any key and therefore you know compaq had to have a have a question type questions it says when we say hit the any key we mean hit any key so we’re really really talking apples and oranges here you know it’s like men are men are from Mars Women are from Venus we’re really in trouble how about how about this AOL sent out like a billion of these disks you member getting these in the mail all the time you know what the number one question for AOL support is when they when you when they call it a less support to get this you get this working do you have a computer they’re putting it into their CD player I mean look you get a thousand hours free if you just get that I’m getting a thousand hours of music free it’s a CD I’ve never seen a cd-rom I can’t tell the difference is platinum preneur must be great music so it’s simple miss it’s simple little things it’s not connecting with the mindset of the person you’re trying to communicate with you know putting yourself in their shoes understanding their perspective and communicating in their language you’re communicating your language and then you feel like insulted when they when you don’t know if you don’t understand it’s you need a computer why should they understand they need a computer i’m not even heard of America Online I don’t blame them so moving to the problem at hand this is my actual drawer at home I will say I will say though that I only have one remote now these are all the ones that I no longer use because I have consolidated one place but it is not this remote because this remote is the work of the devil this remote if you ask it to do something it has to know what things you’ve already done so you can’t just say turn on the TV because if the TV is already on its going to turn it off okay so as a result after buying this gazillion to our maintenance now I have figured this out I don’t use that remote I can hardly look at it but I’ve been through my share of universal remotes and I’ve got one that works it’s called harmony takes years to set up but once it works it’s great so people with lots of money spend people visit the instructions for how to turn on their TV maybe that’s too long we can give you a little cheat cheat sheet here that might work but the bottom line is craziness is this really progress 1980 microwave you turn the knob you press it on what’s this more or less yes I want more I want more of everything ok so the underlying principle now this is the nub of the first part of this presentation is the reason this has all happened between the explosion of Technology if we do this because we can so we do everything because we can so we end up with very complicated interfaces to do lots of things that people don’t want to do and oftentimes hide the things that people do want to do and the best quote going back ways that nothing about user interface design is this one that I found its it’s Mark Twain saying I didn’t have time to write a short letter so I wrote a long one instead okay and and my translation of that is I didn’t have to put time to figure out what you really wanted so I gave you everything and the art of design is not so much designing what to put in as it is making the painful decisions about what to leave out and there is no one that has said this any better and that this is the only thing if you’re designing and experienced uneven product but an experience of any experience this is the fundamental never goes away is said by Alan Kay who was it xerox palo alto research center doing it you know groundbreaking work on user interfaces 30 years ago and this is it in a nutshell this is it simple things should be simple complex things should be possible if you follow that rule you can’t go wrong okay it makes the routine the things that you’re doing all the time it makes them simple and obvious if there are complex things we don’t want obfuscate them but we don’t want to clutter them with you you know you’re not always doing crazy things every day there’s everyone sort of year you made me to do this feature that doesn’t need to be as obvious as the other ones and it can require a little poking around that’s okay but make sure that things that people do frequently are easy to do so we did a little love a little development a little analysis project for the for NASA you know as tense as I do work for NASA with Ken we took a look at the Space Shuttle a user interface I decided it’s too complex there’s a lot of things here happening at once so I

decided to design you know redesign the Space Shuttle using this principle routine simple complex possible we came up with this design now what I like about this is not only as you can see it’s a lot more accessible to the layperson but you got room for a clock analog by the way and an eight-track player and of course you can press the other shuttle pilots with your fuzzy dice unfortunately not only did all designers think like me most of them start off we feel from the outside we start off thinking like Rube Goldberg who was very good at making simple things complex those of many of you will remember his work and his descendants work for Microsoft here are some examples of their groundbreaking products the first portable computer and as we know the the groundbreaking invention of the first laser printer but I’m an equal-opportunity criticize ur of bad user interface we all will remember a clippie probably the most loathed feature but you know apples got its own problems here with auto correct you know hey hey i’m in DC a likkle lawmaker for me will ya you know that’s what I Hampton a weiner got into trouble for isn’t it or how about this one how would you like this to be the first first thing that you see on the ultrasound when you’re when you’re going for your first ultrasound oh my god my child has a pure virtual call in his plug-in container is that hereditary this stuff happens I mean you drive it up and seen billboards they’ve got windows Arizona I used to collect them for fun you know the airports when the when the signs would crash and they’re saying you know legal function call or something but anyway I’ll close this part of the presentation don’t worry there’s more with my personal Pete by my biggest kind of current frustration is not frustrations it’s the automatic faucet okay now I ask you whose problem were they trying to solve here like did we go to bathrooms in airports for three years and afterwards ago that was a pretty good experience but you know I really didn’t like turning the knob you know they could just do something about that so I’m not sure whose problem they’re solving here because this has the same latency problem you go under there and you’re like nothing happens like okay well let me move a little bit okay nothing I ok like dance there a little bit still nothing you know you’re ending up doing this kabuki theater before while I read everybody’s watching you before you except they know that they thought natal problems do before you go off and try the other one assuming this one’s broken you know how long should the kabuki dance speed they should at least tell you you know if no results after five seconds you know try somewhere else okay so the second part is how did it get this bad so the first part is just saying we all know how bad it is it’s crazy this experiment that with it the three that the incomprehensible ax t that right now the majority of times you see a clock in a hotel room or in rental car it’s telling the wrong time I mean clocks are pretty something around a long time you know the fact that we accept that is just outrageous so we said how do we get this bad and it is true that some designers were born with this rare condition it’s a it’s a congenital condition but it’s it’s most often found in people who choose politics for the professor well we occasionally see it in designers but it’s the exception no no most most designers are born like like this and I want to say that the baby has the world’s perfect user interface it’s failsafe because if it doesn’t work the baby dies if no babies you I works the human race does ceases to exist so it’s a pretty good UI it may be frustrating but to the best of it bill it gets the right thing done you don’t get a baby with the user manual and you believe it or not you don’t have that much somatic knowledge that you’ve been born with about how to take care of babies I mean they know how to breathe you know how to breathe but it’s kind of a trial and error and the stakes are really high and it works if it doesn’t work we have problems though it’s you know the old joke that if your parents didn’t have children you probably won’t either now as this child grows old or the user interface becomes increasingly complex particularly during adolescence you see we have the Batman up at the top would be on off switch and the woman at the

bottom and I wish this came with a user’s manual speaking as a man but my point is these are generally good people well-meaning and good people can build products it’s something you have to understand in the next part we’re going to talk about how good people come to build bad products okay let me take you on this road so here’s a good product the ipod what came out generally accepted to be a great product here’s a little spoof of the ipod packaging as if Microsoft were to redesign the ipod packaging okay so just take a look at what happens here you may have seen I guess I got it starts off nice and clean with a clean box that Microsoft puts a logo on it of the top of the human ear addition we got offers we’ve got features we got an upgrade offer we’ve got features on the side we’ve got this is an empty box don’t use it now you go lose to the side note should be in color needs to be warmer we need that that’s wasted space let’s put some stuff there let’s put all the features we need that’s today we could tell what it works with define what 5 gigabytes really means and you end up with a box where you can’t even see the device anymore and lest you think I am criticizing Microsoft that presentation was done by the design team at Microsoft okay there they are showing how frustrated they are to live in an organization that doesn’t let them be designers so they’re good people they’re good designers that’s a funny video it’s on YouTube and I’ve condensed it down just in those slides but that’s not somebody making fun of Microsoft’s that’s Microsoft designers and frustration saying why don’t you just let us design instead of polluting it with all this Mari the purity of the experience is destroyed now we’re you know look you can’t even see the product these these circle stickers are by call by designers packaging designers are called violators because they violate the design now there’s only one way that this happens and it’s called groupthink a term of course that George Orwell invented and groupthink is defined by as being the process of coming up with a decision so stupid that no one person could make it alone now this generally happens after someone says let’s get together to make a decision and the exquisitely engineered place where this process occurs is called a meeting and the importance of meetings is something that every company’s department of progress prevention emphasizes relentlessly relentlessly so let’s say they say they have let’s have a meeting to design that horse well you know what comes out of the committee that designs a horse out comes a cam but here’s the thing the dynamic you have to understand is everybody in that meeting got what they want it was a comprar cess of compromise so the mistake was believing we’re getting together with meeting with people of different interests and everybody where you give somebody everybody so we can leave the room and all feel good and that’s the mistake they made that that consensus builds terrible products and democracy is even worse and building a product at a product organization that creates greatness and insanely great stuff as it see jobs called it requires a dictatorship preferably a benevolent dictatorship but not necessarily so what defines a good experience the product has to answer the question can I do something with this product how do i do something with this product and what kind of how do i know if i got it right so how can i how do i how do i know if i got it right those are the three things that you look for for example here here’s one of my favorite feet clock radios where’s the on switch you know Sony and their infinite wisdom said you know what this on switch thing is overrated we’re just going to let the press we’re going to let the press CD radio or CD radio I guess is what turns it on how do you turn it off it’s like yeah that on switch we drink that’s really confusing customers you know let’s get rid of it so a product that doesn’t make you aware of what it can do like be turned on is kind of deficient sometimes products tease you and say you think you know what the product does and then you’re surprised when you find out it looks like something but it’s really something else that’s those are those are cork coasters made to look like bread ok so now I’m going to get a little bit technical I’ll move quickly through this but I’ll show you by and this is serious now so don’t laugh at this party and I remove is not an actual product when we demonstrate because it’s a priori stuff in there but this is what I call a usability scorecard and it’s just what we talked about before I guess

I could do this with a it’ll make me feel so professorial though I don’t know anyway I’ll show at this point so here are features that are used rarely here are features that are used often here are the number of steps required to access that feature if you make features that are used often difficult to access and features that you use rarely to be it easy to access you’ve done exactly the wrong thing right so this is this is the wrong slope of this graph things that you want to use often need to be down here now if you make things that are you sell them easy to use and easy to access to without cluttering up the ability to find the things that use often go for it but in general you see the slope of the line like this you’re talking about a bad design hard one that could be improved you can see a simple line like this you’re talking about one that’s been designed and this will work on a light switch it’ll work on a radio it’ll work on it will work on almost anything that you have to interface with what do you want to do frequently and how difficult is it to do interestingly you can look at the the regression of that point space / time for a particular user and what you are looking at is you look at the way that shape clay shape changes over time is you’re looking at really the learning curve for the product it’s not just a term of art it’s actually like a learning curve learning curve for easy to use features and learning curve for hard to use features so you have a way of analytically estimating the difficulty of using a product before you invest the time to create it based on just the way that it’s designed okay so that that’s that’s that’s a hard product and exhale abs aria microsoft outlook is the worst offender in my world here because with a single click not only can i compose a message but i can remove a single errant click i can remove a results from my columns of items in the results if he was Microsoft Outlook you might know what I’m telling or I could move a folder somewhere where it’s appears to be invisible and I used to write what my dad was alive and in his 60s you know every every week he call up and said yep da date receives gone again I’m okay i dial into his computer I fix it and put it back together but the other terrible thing about exposing a bit level is there’s no one do like the steps you have to do to undo the thing you did it’s not like just undo it it’s like no no no I’ve done something now and I’m lost but the but that I can’t just walk back out the door I came in I have to find the other secret passage right now it’s a very very gross design decision we made another clear made 30 years ago and if we had longer time we could talk about why bad decisions stick and there’s some very good examples of why bad decisions a bad design stick because once you’ve invested the time the best example is the keyboard we all know this keyboard was designed to be slow and hard to use for any better keyboards but we won’t use them because we have learned this one thank you very much and that’s the way it is with a vedette video editing it was long standing the standard in video editing it continues the day with microsoft products or photoshop for that exam for that for that matter and you won’t get are the real tipping point of conversion to others easier use solutions until you get a dramatic order of magnitude improvement like in cost performance for avid occurred when you had massive improvements in productivity but also at one tenth of the cost of the avid solution avid ended a pinnacle as buying pinnacle as a result to compete okay we have to move fast now because ken runs the tightest ship that I’ve ever been a part of yeah okay so let’s start with the first user interface ever Bing click you click the button turns on great the input has two states the light bulb has two states no manual necessary now we talked about latency before really we first we talked about can it do what I want so how obvious is it that I can do the thing I want then how do i do what i want what are the steps i need to go through how simple is that we talked about analyzing that now let’s look how do I know I did the right thing so the prototypical example is the light bulb if i click the x click the switch for the lightbulb the lightbulb turns on right of course now what happens if i click the switch for the light bulb and it may or may not turn on or it probably will turn on but it’s going to turn on after an indeterminate amount of time okay so would you be tempted to say well i think i’ll press that button again because maybe didn’t hear me the first time so let me try again if somebody else walked up to you in the dark and looked at the button and saw the light was off you think they would walk over and press it to just to make sure it had been pressed can you imagine how stupid it would be to build a device like that ladies and gentlemen meet the crosswalk button there could be not a simpler device which provides some feedback and now some do but couldn’t you just tell me you heard me and you’ll get around to me when you can you know how many times you

walk in you’re like the press did you know it happens it also happens with elevators you press the elevator to go down and the available just like oh I’m almost there I won’t turn the light on you know I want you in I’m like press there press the like turn a ding there it is oh I so close I didn’t think you’d want to know I would be here so soon a bit yeah like I guess I wanted to know I didn’t want to like punch my finger I mean really simple stuff makes a big difference in terms of the way that you feel about using the product ok but I want to explain now but there’s those examples but i want to say what the enormous problem that we have and listen to this listen to this listen this so these are the total computers sold to date it starts in 1977 because before then there were so few it doesn’t even make the graph modem just to be a little violent you know spike to the right so you know two billion computers in use today minimum and the total computing power on the planet estimated at the end of two thousand seven to be 6.4 times 10 to the 18th MIPS MIPS is millions of instructions per second ok now by a strange coincidence and this is this is true this is not a joke by strange coincidence 6.4 by 10 to the 18th is almost is very very close to the number of nerve impulses that your brain can act upon and transmitted in one second so it’s very interesting that even after all this evolution in our own very weird way we have a computing device that’s as complex as all of the world’s computers put together doesn’t you have the same memory but it means that this means that this is capable of doing some pretty amazing things ok so then I said ok we got all those computers we got all this MIPS what is the MIPS over time I don’t even bother to make this look night nice because it’s in the 40s we got one computer that has this mini MIPS in the 70s we get 50,000 computers of one mitts so nothing happens to the mid-90s so when we only use one computer we use it like this we sat in a room we took a week-long course how to learn it because our job dependent on it when this is the Sabre system we made reservations for people who wanted to travel on airlines uh now I’ve lost my train of thought let’s go just kidding so when we only had one computer we can invest a lot of time is because we want dealt with one computer for most people the first computer they ever used was the ATM right and that was a revolutionary thing read instructions off of a screen the changes like a TV and it knows what I’m doing with this screen that was a big learning curve this is where I get to tell you about even now today the very very quickly I have a friend with a nine-year-old daughter she’s starting a bank account she’s taking her $38 to the to the ATM to deposit it and with deference to our sponsors it was not a bank of america hm and she puts the thirty-eight dollars in their accounts it they go to the screen error please call one eight hundred bah blah blah blah blah true story this happened last week this nine-year-old girl the life lesson is teaching mode we’re going to teach you where it’s safe to put your money honey they go into the bank teller and said you know my daughter nine years well $38 it’s in the machine I don’t want to get what’s happening was the bank teller says that’s a different that’s a different group that runs the ATM you got to call them up get away from the audit the cash drawer he’ll take two or three days so she gets home mommy says how did it go well I don’t do they have your money you know I don’t know and they don’t know you know so it’s it’s not this is this is run amok but the real inflection one was the point that that can stole from me which is the introduction of the VCR this is the first device that we had to program and we programmed them is the first device that you would say next thursday from 10 to 11 I want you to record for half an hour now raise your hand if you ever actually program your VCR technical audience here i would estimate less than ten percent okay most people or we used to call them ken we used to call them the flashing 12 people he says how he’s a flashing 12 person okay so I’ll make my next point which is that let me talk about jobs in edison and we think of jobs is a great designer of products or we think of edison is a great inventor but really they’re doing something much rarer they are valuing great design and valuing great genius and creating our culture that supports and nurtures that it’s much much harder anybody can be a great designer but jobs in front of piece of paper i don’t know what he could sketch out but he knows how to see good design and reward it and follow it through with a passionate conviction of what it ought to be even in the face of external influences and internal voices that want to change it for other reasons when asked about how much user input went into the creation of the ipad the potentially apocryphal story depending on what who you listen to was that he said 0 it’s not customers jobs to know what they want and that’s really a paraphrase of Henry Ford it’s

that if I’d ask my customers what they wanted they want to walk but they would have asked for a faster horse so sometimes the cook customer doesn’t help the vocabulary to even express what they want or the imagination to know what is possible and really great design marries and understanding what people would want with what technology is possible it is not this like we’re going to define what people want then you technologies you go figure out how to visit how to build it its demands pull and technology push and having somebody smart enough to know where those two things meet and then follow that vision through relentlessly as a czar and and steve is as are I mean you know what I mean it’s a brutal dictator you know a guy like me standing I never worked for him but a guy like me was rehearsing for the I for the Apple show with in the Big Apple Macworld’s show and literally steve said to him boy I sure hope you’re good at your real job because you suck at this okay a brief story of the mp3 player to illustrate what what Steve went through with it okay this to the right nobody knows what that is it’s the world’s first hard days disk-based mp3 player I of course have one okay I had two gigabytes costs about a thousand dollars but that was the outlier then there was some innovation there was an invit you know event the owner who designed this compact computer you know what they did no market for that thing well laces we licensed the right manufacturing rights to hand go electronics in Korea and we forget about it because all that was happening in the in the mp3 player space where where players were getting smaller cheaper and holding more the only innovation that remained was just just make that device smaller and cheaper and make it hold more now that’s pretty short-sighted but that the game was over if you ask anybody in the year 2000 you know Ellie I want to get into mp3 player market you’re crazy okay and you know where you get with the smaller cheaper faster you get really nice devices that look like this you may recall the movie Zoolander were so mp3 so mp3 so device manufacturers a consider the mp3 player to be a device which plays music whereas Steve came along and said no ipod is an experience which allows you to discover a choir enjoy and share your music those aren’t those are my words but I’m that’s the context and what I’ve advised companies that I consult for is the business here it is you’re exploiting experiences you’re not building devices so how well is this strategy worked if you look at the stripe you can say well you know microsemi chris oft still look they own the lion’s share of this lawyer may be good in theory but microsoft seal that still dominates well in fact as you know the market capitalization of apple is greater than microsoft now even though microsoft rescued that company from going bankrupt with a 300 million dollar investment whatever it was 20 years ago because they didn’t want to go bankrupt because it made it look for bad for antitrust reasons but if you look at how apple has turned that around if you don’t think of about as a windows vs mac issue and you consider what has happened with the mobile devices for the first time in 2011 the pc smartphone and my OS market share will cross over Microsoft has lost the predominant position who cares what operating system it runs I don’t even know anymore it’s running if you if you talk to Google it’s running Chrome that’s their operating system in the future you say what opera says some people will say I’m running Facebook that’s their operating system it’s true true it sounds silly now but believe me Google is about an operating system you see the Chrome OS etc now I can only talk very quickly here now because I’m cutting into Q&A time but i want to say why these things are different because you ought to think that the best products could compete in a fair and open market and the best ones would survive and the worst ones would drop off in that process of natural selection the marketplace is true but the things that are being selected for is not product quality or user experience what is being selected for bit because it is not an unbiased ecosystem the ecosystem is biased by things like ego the ego the people building this ah my friend gabby is the new risk 5370 processor my next product is going to use the 5380 or my wife wants this feature I’m going to do this and make her happy or like we can’t build that because if we do were to compete with his competitor and the government says we’re getting too big they won’t like that or patent protection which is another form of innovation stifling depending on how you look at it particularly in the software world or financial performance look Jim you got to ship that product this quarter because otherwise we’re going to get creamed in the market that has nothing to do with customer happiness so these other factors that influence because the organism which is trying to survive is either the company trying to survive in the company ecosystem which it may act in its short-term interest but in the long term detriment of its customers or it may be the employee trying to survive in the company ecosystem and that’s how they make their decisions I can make a bad decision but I won’t get fired for it if I’m sorry I can make it I can make no decision I won’t get fired for it if I make it that

bad decision I make I might get fired for it therefore I will make no decision that happens a lot so I just wanted to in consensus also i think is it is it the desire for consensus to keep people happy when i build products i’m like mm-hmm you know i’m not here to make you happy I’m here to make the best product we possibly can almost done Ken don’t worry don’t don’t get that rifle out yet because this part is this there’s only three slides left so I want to point out that they can to get better and this is the part where I say look take nothing don’t look at that that’s wrong take a look at this blank where are we okay here’s the process of the committee that designed the wheel okay in the middle we start off with an idea that it should be round it could be square it could be oval so we go through the development process we ship it we listen to our customers and say oh we got it right so this is the way that we came in from kind of the industrial world into the computing age and say we sit in our infinite wisdom decide we’re going to build and then we relentlessly follow that vision all the way till the we ship then we ship it and maybe there’s some things will change but you know for now you get it in black and only black in an uncompetitive market I mean really you know we really didn’t care what color the wheel was or what cover the color the Model T was because nothing else existed so this is the story of the company that goes in a different direction and actually builds a square wheel I could tell you the story or that would take a half an hour and of itself but suffice it to say you start off with thinking the world wants this some guy comes along in the organization says I want this we try to pull him back under the straight and narrow it starts to get so much momentum now that this guy a powerful enough he can force it in his direction because if he goes backwards its egg on his face you know he’ll rather not he’ll rather not ship the product then ship a product and have it fail so now he’s his interests are completely on the line they get out here and ship the product of that market place doesn’t want and maybe if they’re lucky they have time to recover based on market feedback the best example of this I think is iridium which motorola started to put up a global communication system just in the beginning days of cell phones when an invested billions of dollars because the this is the thesis was that I’m going to give you a phone you can make a phone call from anywhere you don’t need to me to need near a cell tower you make the phone call it always works a one service provider all for the entire universe no roaming charges nothing now what they didn’t say is the phone’s going to cost three thousand dollars it’s going to weigh two pounds and it’s going to cost you five dollars a minute to make a phone call now all of those things came up during the development and everybody with the with the with a group thing says yeah five minutes a phone call yeah I think most people would pay that so you know I they got to the point where they’re actually going to deorbit the satellites when this is a complete failure Mike Mike remoter rollo2 lr the RDM LLC and through my remodel it took about it greater than a two billion dollar right down on it eventually the DoD stepped in chop the prices and by an order of magnitude and off they went to become basically a provider of information or provider of telecom services in remote areas I have one it’s good they also built it with the prescient idea that only needed support 1200 baud because who wants to transmit data anyway okay so really really what we see now in the iterative model is we don’t see the monolithic desire to our ability to understand our customer at the beginning but a way of integrating feedback from people within the organization and up and most importantly as are a single person who makes decisions about what is and isn’t the product the second you design you you the second you divide up the ultimate say of what the product does like you said you get all decisions but you can’t decide what color it is forget it it’s over you have to have one person who gets to render their yay or nay they can take the recommend it has to be one person has to be I could tell you a lot of stories about that I want in any way I’ll summarize now saying technology has gotten us from this wonderful device that took pretty good pictures and now we have this why the only reason why is because we can you don’t want this you’re frustrating you select something on the menu you don’t know what to do anymore I can’t find my way out to that thing I can’t take a picture i press the button it’s like two seconds like cleaning I took your picture no that’s not what I wanted you know oh you’re in you’re in scene mode now what scene mode i don’t have to scene mode you know it’s crazy okay so that the overarching of all of this comes down to one fact is that a company now in order to be successful needs to balance on top every time they touch the customer whether it’s when the customer buys the product whether they use the product where they use the ecosystem the product is a part of for the entire holistic experience where they touch the brand and even when things go wrong and they contact customer service all of those things

have to say one word to the customer or one phrase they all have to point and balance the company on that word now for Apple I I’m not going to be expert on this but for Apple it might be easy it’s easy may not be entirely true but notice that this system is dynamically unstable if you get one if you get one of these things not working that ball is going to fall off the real genius is creating an organization it looks like this okay where the organization self corrects to that message it allows people and powers people to come back on message even when Pete mistakes are made okay last slide people don’t make bad products companies make bad products because companies allow people to make decisions that make bad products when the company’s needs aren’t balanced with the customers disaster and sued ship that product I don’t care we got to do it by tuesday no every point where you touch the customer should it convey a consistent message build experiences not devices listen to the customer but not too much because they may not know what they want I could up if we had more time I could tell you great stories about asking customers about whether they want physical buttons or or touch buttons and depending on how old they are what their experiences they’ll tell you different things democracies don’t produce great products consensus is the enemy of excellence that’s all I have for you I’m going to just thank the people that helped me put this together large thank you so much for coming to Pensacola thank you for having me him as a physician I can tell you I’ve watched this interface for 30 years of seeing certain things happen one of them was the icd-9 codes that we’ve been playing with our last few years and in the last six months and now coming up for January we as physicians are all going to be faced with the icd-10 codes which have gone from 14,000 unnecessary codes now to six or nine times that and somebody up top is insisting that the doctor himself it out now there’s a lot of MIPS in my brain and it’s not enough that why don’t you quit NASA and come work for the government for the government well and fix health care what would I do in the afternoon though I guess I could saw I guess I could solve the Middle East problem yeah I agree this is me oh well wherever the mic is do you take the mic to anybody and only yet this is aj that was a wonderful presentation thank you thanks for coming to pensacola thank you forever um i think one of the issues with technology it can do wonderful things as a tool but can also be as the physician just mentioned a huge time waster I in and I think that’s where we need to go it’s night my daughter Carys my iphone4 I don’t I want the phone call to make a phone call and take a voicemail unless I’m making international business deals I don’t eat that a lot of things so i think the simplicity is where we need to lean versus more and i’d like to get your info absolutely i see i try to provide a framework to actually measure simplicity but the next kind of level is we have all these computing horsepower why don’t we deploy some of it for simplicity what i mean by it you know if you press print on your computer there could be some intelligence that you know he press print 15 seconds ago and nothing’s come out of the printer let me try to figure out what’s going on nobody’s doing that now everything everything has to be in perfect alignment so i think what we could do is redeploy and of course with Moore’s law you know this stuff is good will double in 18 months but why don’t take the next 18 months to take the technology to take the work off of our shoulders and make the technology more usable rather than just doing the same things faster and that’s what I would like to see and that requires a different software system design architecture because you’re trying not only to deploy a specific straight line function for user but you’re also trying to monitor that flow of that function and provide them with the right feedback and it ain’t Clippy you know about how to do what they want to do better well you’ve made a very clear that we need simplicity in our electronics and you made the most humorous presentation of all that but but really taught us that why do you think people still go to places like best buy and target and buy more complex electronics than the simpler ones I think in general if they had a they had two choices one between complex and simple I think their choice would be simple and in many cases they pay more for simple through bose stores which has long produced good products

that are easy to use you’re paying a higher price you pay more for apple because of the ease of use which is not just apples berlin brilliance as a design company but also because the homogeneity of their in their ecosystem they build everything so poor microsoft has to make it work with 9,000 graphic cards apple doesn’t so people do pay more for things that work better when it comes right down to consumer electronics there aren’t a lot of truck there aren’t a lot choices that’s why it’s very important to realize or it’s interesting to realize Apple computer change their name a couple years ago they’re no longer Apple Computer their apple so they’ve decided and I would not be surprised to see an apple not a not Apple TV as we know it today but Apple consumer electronics devices because they’re the only company that has really cracked the code with making this complexity usable and they haven’t done a great job haven’t done that great they have not done a great job particularly on this but iPad iPhone I think they’ve done a very good job at least leading the way and there’s a whole bunch of interesting stories about that that we don’t have to tell time to tell that but but I think others others are others are learning from them but Apple as the most valuable company in the u.s. right now still has a lead let’s thank our speaker thank you