Another Kind of Personal Touch in Service Design

Last weekend, I visited (for the first time) New York City. I’m passionate about history and the highlight was going to the Statue of Liberty and the historical immigration center on Ellis Island. At the historical immigration center on Ellis Island, my wife and I took a guided tour offered by the National Park Service. Our guide was an old gentleman (in his late 60s – early 70s). He explained the history of the place and tried to give us a glimpse on how the immigrants who passed through Ellis Island felt during the process of entering / immigrating to the US. Throughout this exercise of empathizing with the people who passed through that immigration center 100 years ago, the guide referred

Good-Design Fails When It Ignores Some Target Users

In my recent trip to Nevada and Arizona, at the Las Vegas airport, I stumbled upon this very interesting design failure. Obviously, the round shaped opening is counter-intuitive for a paper-recycling bin. As I walked further through the airport, I saw a properly designed paper-recycling bin: Later I saw the whole set of trash and recycling bins, properly designed to fit intuitions and be practical – the opening of the trash bin is larger than the one for cans and bottles because it needs to accommodate items that are larger than bottles and cans. A few meters (yards) away I figured out the problem behind the paper-recycling bin with a round opening (first picture) when I saw this full set of

Machine Learning Needs to Start Unlearning, For our Own Good

Last week wasn’t a good one and in the weekend, I wanted to watch a comedy – one of those mind-numbing movies that generates mindless laughter. I opened Netflix (we don’t have cable, just Netflix and Amazon Prime) and started looking for such a movie. After about half-an-hour of frustration, my wife recommended me a title after she searched on her smartphone for “good comedies on Netflix”. Five minutes of additional frustration later, we found a movie that fitted the mind-numbing criterion and made us laugh about 5 times in 90 minutes. Naturally, you might wonder why it was so hard for me to find a mind-numbing comedy on Netflix, when one can find virtually any kind of film on the aforementi

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