I recently watched this TED talk by Daniel Kahneman about the experiencing self and the remembering self.
Apparently, they’re quite different. The experiencing self is the one who lives and feels in the moment. The remembering self is the one that engages in retrospective sense-making and decides, post-facto, whether the experience was good, fun, etc. It is the remembering self’s evaluation that informs future decision making.
This has enormous implications for UX evaluation. Even if the experiencing self has a (relatively) bad time, as Kahneman explains in the talk, but the remembering self makes a positive evaluation, the experience is remembered as good. We can measure UX in the moment, and track eye gaze and all that jazz. But ultimately, what really matters for future decisions is what users take away from the experience and how they evaluate it after it’s over. This is good news. It means that users may forget or put up with a few frustrations – and still assess the experience well, especially if it ends well. It also means that the research framework for website experience analysis that I created back in 2004 is valuable, because it focuses on how users make sense of the experience and what they take away.
This is a short movie made by students in our CGT department. I loved it so much, had to share it here:
Yes, it’s an hour long. One of the best hours you might spend. Watch this video.
- Because you’re immersed in social media or because you’d like to understand it better.
- Because this video will help you take a deeper look at YouTube culture, and by extension, social media culture, contemporary culture.
- Because you don’t usually take the time to scratch below the surface, beyond blogger relations, ROI, product promotion. But you’d like to.
- Because this is your world, our world, and it’s our duty to understand it.
This is the video of a presentation Kansas State anthropology professor Dr. Michael Wesch gave at the Library of Congress.
No, it’s not a boring PowerPoint. No, it’s not boring and academic. It’s funny, insightful, human, and provocative. Who knows, it might even help with that ROI.
P.S. Yes, the lyrics of the “Numa” video are in Romanian.
CBS published this 12 min. segment on the Millenial generation. I hope my students will watch it and post comments with their reactions to the video. What do you think? Is this an accurate description of your generation? How did you feel when watching the video?
(hat tip to whoever posted this on twitter, unfortunately, I can’t remember who it was) Edit: I found it! It was a blog post from Joseph Jaffe)
Update: I’m embedding the video and asking com. theory students to view it. This segment is ripe for ideological criticism.