Applications & User Experience: The Limitation Game

  • Posted By: admin
  • Posted On: March 6, 2017

Fact: we don’t live in a perfect world

Conclusion: we cannot rely on absolutes.

Speaking of absolutes, we as human beings can never be seamless in anything we do within the contexts of this world.

In actual form, we are psychologically incapable of understanding the effects and it takes us considerable time to understand, feel and perceive even the slightest trivial issues we come across.

Once faced with problems, we perceive things on the basis of past experiences, yet we are trying to overcome these factors, but still as humans, we are lagging behind, in fact, we are way behind.

1. The technology and mind, a never ending battle:

In all these muddled state of affairs, we are still making a gradual progress in technology while putting up a good fight against our own mental dimensions.

The reason we witness technology being so volatile is due to the single most significant factor in this entire equation of human context, and that factor is called the “Brain”.

An ancient battle, that erupted with the first logical thought or invention by the human being and will continue to do so unless one takes over the other, but until now, the brain is winning.

This whole board game of technological advancements and the fight to conquer brain is leading the technologists to lay down their chips in front of one barrier. This barrier is commonly known as “Limitations”.

Let’s check how and what forms of these limitations are affecting technology, innovation and the human behavior in holding its ground?

2. Human Psychology (in all its forms)

Admit it, we are born with in-capabilities and we cannot do much about this inadequacy of our mind and body. Humans have at least 5 known senses of touch, sight, smell, taste, and hear. The use of these senses depends on what context a human is experiencing under what time frame, but still coping up to the stimulus remains a challenge.

Whether it is viewing things from the eyes and trying to focus multiple objects at the same time, or, making ourselves lost in illusion created by a number of inducements, such as light, sound, and colors, or, the false decisions we make based on the historical perception without realizing the present scenario, or losing attention to something because of the In-attentional blindness, are some of the proofs of humans’ own limited physical and perceptive limitations.

The very control of our behaviors resides in our mind. We as humans are always waiting for eureka effect to happen.

Getting my drift?

Yes, it is the ultimate limitation which not only we face as the solution providers but on the other side of the mirror, our users are equally intrigued with the limitations they face while using applications.

a. Geography

“Everyone knows your location and whereabouts” – 20 years ago, if you said this to a computer user, he/she would have looked at you with surprise. But now, it is a very well-known fact.

Geo effects are equally imposed on the users, applications, developers, and testers. Geography plays a critical role in application development and deployment.

Here are some interesting pointers:

b. Spoken Languages

Not everyone in the world can speak English. Each location has its own native and spoken languages. The availability of mobile devices and free internet access has transformed the software application market into a global phenomenon. But if software developers are putting limits to their ideas, that effect will be meaningless for their business and what they want to sell.

Cutting to the chase, if the application is not supporting the localization to at least lingual instance then let’s admit we are inducing limitation which may result in outcomes beyond our controls.

c. Time Differences

The time difference plays a vital role. If we are launching a news update site and our home base is in Canada, where we are updating news decks for India, then it would be ideal for the application to update its queues in accordance with Indian time, rather than Canadian.

Similarly, the time difference also relates to how much day and night time users are active.

d. Religious, Cultural and Social norms

Believe it or not, some of the most common factors can play the most vital and decisive role in application development, it’s testing, and eventually building a marketing perspective.

The social and religious norms shape up the users’ psychology and how they perceive about applications. For instance, a teenager’s choice of selecting and using a social platform would be different than that of older people.

e. Weather and Terrain

Most of the northern and southern hemisphere of the world does not experience the sun setting for almost 6 to 8 months of the year, and when it does really set, it would not rise for 3 to 4 months.

The thinking and perception of the people habituating around that part of the world are very different from the people living on the equators. You can apply these factors to people living in the mountainous areas to the ones living in the desert, each time the context plays its wonders, which brain tend to understand later.

Admit it, we make applications for the people living in urban areas only. We hardly consider the factors which can be useful for people outside these domains.

f. Domain Relationships

Every application is assembled within the principles of some kind of domain. This domain can associate to business, social, or any number of specific purposes.

The challenge for testers and developer rises to new levels when they have to test the applications under the case of not only a domain but also where one domain communicates with the other.

This specific communication occurs when a user put up some sort of transaction or activity that can send or receive the data across these domains, for example, a credit card transaction, or exporting data from one network to another using some sort of cloud-based utility.

All this poses trivial or complex challenges to the application boundaries and can reveal important errors.

3. Operating Systems and browsers

The greater challenge for testers originates when they have to test an application on diverse platforms and operating systems to get the same desired results.

The approach was much simpler when the systems were based on desktop computers, operating over a definitive number of operating systems, applications and browsers.

Now the game has changed significantly, since the inception of mobile operating systems, and continuous delivery approaches, the number of updates happening to one instance of an application is a normal practice.

But if the users at the other end are not updating their devices, the backlog becomes very critical as it can impose forceful user experience issues, and may result in unwanted deadlocks.

4. Device Compatibilities

Last but not least, an important restraint software vendors’ face these days is their lack of control over the several hundred types of devices in the hands, on the wrists, and on the desktops of millions of their users.

For service providers, it is somewhat easier as they don’t rely on what devices are at the end of their signaled network, but for application developers, the market share plays a very important role. So for them, the compatibility of their application with “n” number of devices is a vital factor.

This whole mix and match limitation game make’s this industry so sensitive yet so much sturdy in the sense of evolution.  The market owners and innovation leaders keep coming up with a solution to counter these barriers.

The war between the mind and the innovation will keep on going – and as far as we can see, still there is no end in sight.