It’s awesome that Mr. Chuck Longanecker from Digital Telepathy is talking about how essential it is to iteratively design and test UX designs with users. He does make it seem like “collecting feedback”, and “finding out what users like” is an easy process. It is not. Feedback coming from various different directions can definitely be overwhelming, especially for early stage start ups or folks just getting started with a prototype or UX design. It’s just as easy to be misled by a gathering of opinions as it is to leverage it in a useful way. I am sure their team does this, but I find it critical not to lose in the discussion of designer-ly things the fact that gathering user feedback should include some sense of research rigor (proper sampling, data quality) which can provide teams working with early ideas and concepts the focus and clarity that they so desperately the need.

In this way I encourage the ‘pure’ designers to get some help from researchers so they can focus on what it is they do best - create and innovate.

I also find it exciting that Mr. Longanecker mentions user testing to also “invalidate” an idea, because I think that is the single most useful - and underappreciated - value of user testing. I do find that term in particular to be limiting. I wish we could change the vocabulary here to reflect a more innovative, creative process. ”Validate” still assumes that a certain design is a base point of departure, and all feedback needs to be justified in terms of it. In taking this limited view, you may be missing whole other insights and opportunities to meet your users’ needs.