Wednesday, November 03, 2010

What wisdom of crowds?

John Scully on Steve Jobs' principles:

He always looked at things from the perspective of what was the user’s experience going to be? But unlike a lot of people in product marketing in those days, who would go out and do consumer testing, asking people, “What did they want?” Steve didn’t believe in that.

He said, “How can I possibly ask somebody what a graphics-based computer ought to be when they have no idea what a graphic based computer is? No one has ever seen one before.” He believed that showing someone a calculator, for example, would not give them any indication as to where the computer was going to go because it was just too big a leap.

Reminds me of what Henry Ford said about his potential customers, "If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses."

In general, when people talk about The Wisdom of Crowds they forget that the concept applies to situations when users had had a lot of experience interacting with an object or system in question, therefore they can share their collective wisdom.

tags: s-curve, invention, problem, apple, creativity, information

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