How do you make an objective assessment of your website? Are you limiting yourself to page views, clicks and duration? In 2018, Adelphi Digital product consultant, Aaron Nichol, predicts a shift in the way we research user experience, with an acceleration in automated machine research.
Before the advent of the automatic switch board, a decent wage could be earned manually connecting calls by inserting a pair of phone plugs into the appropriate jacks as a switch board operator. We quickly realised this could be improved through automation and before long those jobs were a thing of the past.
In recent years, with the ascendency of ‘AI’, the hype around widespread disappearance of more jobs has risen like a helium balloon let loose on a windy day. Obviously, a number of tasks performed by humans today just won’t compete with cheap, reliable automation. Knowing this, the pessimistic take is that automation will render large swaths of the working population unemployed with no prospects of reemployment. The optimistic take is that humans—being incredibly adaptable—will embrace AI to invent new jobs that make use of available human capital. If we accept the latter of these takes, then we can view automation as a good thing; a way to improve our productivity en-mass and perpetuate continued global advancement on many fronts.
For information-heavy professions, machine learning will seep slowly into every open space, taking care of the mundane tasks that consume our days but don’t draw upon our creativity and decision-making skills. At Adelphi Digital, we’ve been discovering the ways that machine learning will support our Product Managers and UX Consultants to make better, more informed decisions. It’s still early days but the prospects are exciting.
The future of UX research is bright. Machine learning and automation are driving a research process that is up to 100 times fasted, with up to 100 times more data. This will provide an acceleration in learning cycles, personalisation and product improvements, and allow the value to shift from design to innovation. You will also be able to learn about you competitor’s product far more efficiently – giving you the edge in your industry.
So where do we start? The key is to start. Start recording real time audio and video capture, invest in automatic transcription and comprehension, start building conversational interfaces to learn, apply speech to text conversation and use voice translations to perform research with ESL customers.
It’s time to ask yourself, what do you want to know in 2018.
Aaron Nichol is a digital strategy and product consultant with Adelphi Digital, and an expert in guiding digital products from idea to reality.
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What do you want to know in 2018?
The Melbourne office is offering complimentary 90 minute idea workshops in January/February 2018