I'm trying to introduce UX design to my company in order to improve the understanding of it with a light talk.

For that, I'm looking for a short speech title which will use a very simple and understandable for everyone (not especially web team) analogy of UX design.

I'm thinking about house building or common stuff that everybody will understand and if possible incorporate some humour (you don't catch flies with vinegar).

If somebody have an idea, that could be great.

  • "Satisfy the cat": youtube.com/watch?v=dln9xDsmCoY ... Maybe not quite what you're after, but perhaps related
    – mc01
    May 19, 2015 at 20:18
  • What does your company do?
    – Peter
    May 20, 2015 at 8:03
  • A lot around entertainement : video games, comics, animation films. May 20, 2015 at 15:19

6 Answers 6


It hasn't been once or twice when UX design has been compared to architecture, people interact with products of both without even thinking about it.


Call it "Desire Lines"

And lead with this image: Design vs. UX

(I don't know where I originally got this image, and reverse image search is turning up many possibilities.)

  • 5
    I have no idea why this pic became so popular. It is totally incorrect. UX isn't about bypassing design at all. It's just an example of poor planning, nothing to do with UX / design. It's more of an analogy for hacking than UX.
    – JonW
    May 19, 2015 at 18:04
  • 1
    Ideally, UX and Design should work hand in hand. However, when design becomes a barrier, people take shortcuts. The picture illustrates that really well.
    – RobC
    May 19, 2015 at 18:19
  • 1
    I've always taken it as an example of bad design where the user experience wasn't considered. It's a reminder to test with actual users and not just assume they'll do what you expect. May 19, 2015 at 19:47

You don't need to make it funny

There is so many metaphors you could choose to convey what UX means and I don't think you need to make it funny to ensure that your message gets through....to the contrary its a serious matter that any orgnisation should give due attention, so the approach you take matters.

You need to trigger Interest

A good starting point here is to start with the basics, perhaps using the layered approach by Jesse James Garrett:

enter image description here


You could complement and epmhasis its meaning using a metaphor of your choice. Personally, I would explain that UX is more than the sum of its parts and follow-up with "architecture" as the main metaphor.

  • In fact It have to be funny because of my public (it's an user centered talk :) ) otherwise they will not listen or be interested (come who want). May 20, 2015 at 15:24

Why UX matters

I use two case studies to illustrate two simple and complementary ideas around the importance of UX.

1. Bad UX can kill

Air France 447 Wreckage

  • The case is outlined in the following article:
    How Lousy Cockpit Design Crashed An Airbus, Killing 228 People

  • Basically, the lack of (progressive) feedback in the control stick UX for the Airbus A330-200 was one of the crucial contributory factors in the tragic crash of the plane.

    • If you have time to expand on the case, there were also other secondary UX contributory factors such as the lack of redundancy, proper visual indications, etc.
  • There are many other case studies that you can use for why bad UX can create real human disaster.

  • I prefer to use the Air France 447 example because it's more relatable: audiences may have a hard time putting themselves in the shoes of a nuclear operator or soccer fan at an overcrowded stadium, but almost everyone has experienced air travel and can relate to the primal fear of a deadly airplane crash.

2. Good UX can delight

  • I like Jinsop Lee's example of alternative clocks in his TED talk:
  • He describes a clock that allows different scents to waft through a room at different hours of a day:

    enter image description here

  • The point here is, whether you think this is an effective clock or not, Jinsop's example shows that design has the ability not only to prevent disaster, but to craft experiences that can surprise and delight users.

  • This article at UX Myths provides more examples on delightful design.

I do think UX talks need to be interesting. First, UX professionals are (and should) be held to a higher standard of presentation because audiences expect us to understand how to shape user experiences.

Second, UX is a cross-disciplinary field by nature so it's important for UX professionals to be able to not only evangelize and educate, but also inspire audiences around UX.

  • Thank you for the delightful design example, it's a good idea. For the A330, it's quite dramatic, i'm looking for something more fresh. I can't agree with you more about the importance of ux talks. May 20, 2015 at 15:22
  • Air crash is a very good example here. Using this as an example will most certainly deliver impact and get attention! I can't recall any air crash accident where bad UX wasn't at least one of the contributing factors...pilots who forget to pressurise the cabin because they thought the switch was on or fuel technician who didn't convert pounds to kilos... etc where are all those human factor specialists when cockpit controls are laid-out.... Air crash accidents are definitely worthy of a separate debate ;)
    – Okavango
    May 20, 2015 at 15:43

When I want to explain UX to my students I use this example: 'Steve wants to buy a cell phone' then I go through different criteria that affects Steve select a phone. This includes things Steve wants 'to-do' using the cell phone, and objective qualities and subjective qualities that Steve is looking for in such a phone. enter image description here

I use this example to show students that UX is a sum of the criteria and all of them affect whether Steve selects a phone or not. Therefore, I motivate UX, and that merely taking a subset of UX into account, most common one is 'to-do' related things, can negatively influence market success of a product.


It is all about how people interact with PRODUCTS and SERVICES in their day to day life. There are many factors which influence the interactive experience.

Like —

How ergonomic it is,

How efficient it is in functionality,

How it feels while using it,

How effetely it solve the needs of the user,

How relevant to the situation while you are using it.

Pic Credit: ux.stackexchange.com

Let’s take an example of Wallets like Paytm, Freecharge.

Security is the priority for any finance application. In order to make it secure they are providing us OTP on registered mobile number. Previously we need to go back from application to the inbox, read the OTP and remember the same and at last type it into the text field to proceed to payment, It is a very lengthy process. But nowadays, they make it easier for the user. They fetch the OTP from your inbox and paste it into the text field automatically. It is much easier for you to make a payment.

**What do you think, UX Influence in our daily life?

When you order food by seamlessly,

When you book tickets at the last moment,

When a doctor access all your records in simple clicks,

When you can send gifts to your special one who is miles away.**

UX is all about making your day to day activity simpler and giving you satisfying and seamless experience.

For example- Facebook has like feature form very long but they launched emoticon to show your emotions on the post. Making online social interaction much more richer, expressive and personalized.

Pic Credit : TechCrunch

Functionality, Aesthetics and user emotions are some of the central themes of user experience design. What binds to these three is ease of use of product and services.

We may have a product which looks great but it is taking a lot of efforts to the user to interact with product or services, it is difficult to sustain for a long time in the market.

Let’s take an example of touch screen car console and tactile screen console.

The touchscreen console is quite destructive to operate while you are driving at a high speed because you need to look at the screen to operate the desired function. Cars manufacturer are again moving tactile button console from the touch screen.

Why do you think it is happening, It is all about user experience.

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