There's a very interesting discussion thread going on at IxDA forum, called "Interaction Designers: What is your elevator pitch?" I consider myself an Interaction or UX Designer who is evangelize UX to the designer and developer community. Although UX Design is a broader term than Interaction Design because it could be any aspect that affects the user experience of a product, these two terms are often used interchangeably in software design. In many social situations, I need to first give the elevator pitch of what is UX design. My answer has evolved over the years:
Q: What is Interaction Design or UX?
A: [when I first got into HCI field]: It's like a fashion design but for computer software.
A: [when I was in grad school]: It's a study of human behaviours when interacting with computer technology through user research, design, and usability evaluation.
A: [Now] I help people improve their user experiences with they technology they rely on everyday through designing useful, usable, and attractive software. I would like to design compelling User Experience that puts a smile on people's faces.
Here are my favourite elevator pitches from the discussion thread:
- I design how digital products and humans interact with each other.
- I plan and build online experiences for people by focusing on making things easy to use and enjoyable. I do that by listening to people and working to incorporate solutions to meet the needs of the people that will use it. I pretty much just love efficiency and optimizing things for others as best as I can.
- I help spread the smile when dealing with products and the products could range from a simple website to physical products to entire systems.
- "I'm an interaction designer"
"I design how things should behave and then get ignored by everyone else."
"Oh, like what?"
"Like that your TV remote should have a dial, like a mouse wheel, for volume and channel changing. Because you can skip ahead much faster and count how many notches you've clicked. It could even depress so an on-screen number could rapidly change, and then pressing shoots off to that channel."
"That's a good idea, why aren't they like that?"
- To General Public - "You've seen the TV ad for that Easy Button? I do that."
To IT Manager - "Making your 50,000 lines of code usable by Normal People"
To Marketing - "I'm the Competitive Edge."
To CIO - "What's the main difference between a conventional IT shop and a professional software development house? Me."
- I design software and websites that people don't hate.
What's your elevator pitch?