I’ve had a few interactions in the recent past that have reinforced the need to know your story when creating software.

It’s often easy to start breaking down the data you have or need and creating screens and forms for that data. Primarily software is about interacting with data. This is pretty natural. What I have found is that often we forget about the story we are trying to tell our users with that. Why do they care about the details? Often you don’t, it’s the overall insight that the data provides.

So why make users spend all the cognitive effort on decoding the data when you can tell them what it means? You have the data, so you can always provide the details when it’s important. To me, forgetting your story allows you to be like writing a paper for a class without an introduction or closing to tie all your points together. Someone can always come to the same conclusion, but it requires much more effort.

Travis Smith

Polyglot software craftsman. Knowledge disseminator. Awesome maker.