Thoughts on product design + user experience

Listen to Steve Wozniak describe his Segway antics, reminisce about Apple, and gush over Fusion-io

Written by bbb on August 20, 2009

Download the MP3 (35:08 duration)

“I’ve taken my Segway 108 mph without a helmet.”

And with that statement, The Woz had his audience hooked. Not that he needed a hook, mind you, as over 700 people packed into a ballroom in Waterloo to hear him speak: that’s about, oh, 670 more than the original plan had assumed, according to Iain Klugman of Communitech.

User experience, design, and usability emerged as strong themes in Steve’s talk. I especially enjoyed hearing him give credit to Jef Raskin with first instilling these values at Apple, which you’ll find at around 21:20 in the recording:

One of the things Apple is good at is keeping things simple because we got a reputation in the early days for being oriented towards simplicity and ease of use. Largely came from one guy that came and joined Steve [Jobs] and I in the early days, and Jef Raskin was his name…. He said you should always take the effort to put the design effort into your product to make it work easy and well… I took that in my head to mean, the human is more important than the technology.

Many thanks to Communitech for organizing the event! And thanks to RIM also, for buying breakfast for such a huge crowd. Word on the street is this was the largest-ever turnout for a Techworking Breakfast.

Note: I recorded the above MP3 with my iPhone’s Voice Memos application, not sure what to expect in terms of quality. To my delight, it turned out reasonably well, given the simple technical setup: it sat on a chair next to me.