CART Transcript for How-to Session 7

Friday, April 4, 2014 2:30 p.m. – 3:32 p.m.


Held at:

Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace Hotel

202 East Pratt Street

Baltimore, MD

Communication Access Realtime Translation (CART) is provided in order to facilitate communication accessibility and may not be a totally verbatim record of the proceedings. 

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   We have a lot planned for this hour, so we’re just going to power right on in. So if somebody doesn’t mind grabbing the door for me. Thank you.

My name is Emily Lytle‑Painter from the Getty Museum in Los Angeles. I work in education. We are going to show you today a little bit about prototyping. This originally started after Dana did a workshop at the Getty. We’ve had a lot of success at the Getty using prototype since then.

What we’re going to do is actually ‑‑ nope. First I’m going to let my people introduce themselves.

>> I’m Dana Mitroff Silvers. I know some of you from the 11 years that I worked at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art when I headed up the web team and am now a consultant working with museums on design thinking. I also run the blog Design Thinking for Museums.

This is going to be an interactive session. So we’re going to actually ask you to interact with each other in real life, not with your devices. You’re going to not be using your iPhone. If you want to flee the room, you have a few more minutes. We’re going to have you work with each other. I’m going to let ‑‑

>> Ahree Lee: I’m Ahree Lee. I’m relatively new to museums. I started at the Getty last year. Since then I’ve been trying to bring common practices like prototyping into work I’ve been doing at the Getty. I’ll be showing slides of that stuff. And I spent many years working in technology at places like Apple and HP.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   We have co‑authors who are here today who contributed to our paper which we hope that you’ll read. We’re going to be filling in for them today. I encourage you to Tweet them or reach out to them by e‑mail and say hi and talk to them about everything.

In today’s session, Dana will introduce prototype and design thinking. Then we’re going to do a hands‑on prototyping challenge that you guys — it is going to be really fun. And then we’re going to do ‑‑ Ahree will introduce examples. And then we’re going to have you do more talking to each other about how you can take this home and institute it at your own institutions tomorrow.

So, Dana.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   What is prototyping? I assume you came here because you’re interested in prototyping, maybe using it in your institution. In our paper, which I hope you will read, we define prototyping as the practice of building low‑fidelity representations of products, services, or experiences in order to learn and test before proceeding.

You are actually going to build a low‑fidelity product today in this workshop. That’s your other warning. So prototyping is a tool for learning and testing. It’s also a tool for empathy. And this is something I talked a lot about in the paper I wrote last year about the design thinking process. It’s about building empathy not only for your user but it could be for your colleagues, for your staff, for your leadership and your institution, to build empathy and understanding for the users for whom you’re making products and experiences. It’s also a tool for exploring and inspiring. And inspiring also gets into inspiring your colleagues, staff, leadership, planning and validating.

This last term, validating, is my shout‑out to a book “The Lean Start‑up” by Eric Ries, which I recommend that you read if you haven’t read it already. It talks about validating what you’re making before you invest the time and effort to really build it out.

This is a slide you have probably seen in other presentations, maybe over the years, about failing early and failing often; the whole notion that if you prototype and fail early in the process of whatever it is you’re making, you will save yourself time, money, a lot of emotional grief. It’s really important to think about doing this iteratively early in the beginning of anything you’re making.

As we’re going to talk about in our presentation, you can prototype physical things, which is what’s most commonly thought of when you think of prototyping. You can also prototype digital experiences. But I think most importantly what we talk about in our paper, you can prototype in‑person interactions.

So literally at the Getty they’re prototyping holding meetings, ways of organizing departments. You can prototype organizational systems and structures. We’ll talk about that briefly.

So, a term that we’ve been talking about a little bit is design thinking. Who’s heard of this term “design thinking”?

Maybe like a third of the room.

Design thinking is a process for innovation and problem solving. It is a methodology and a mindset. It’s a five‑step process. We’re really going to focus in on this process, the orange shape here, prototyping. We’re not going to have time to really take you through it, but this is something that we’re going to refer to a lot. It’s a process of human‑centered design.

Like I said, today we’re going to focus on prototyping. We’ll briefly start you with some of the other phases. So we’re going to have you try it. This is a how‑to session. We really thought design thinking is the thing you can stand here and talk about it, but you have to do it and the same with prototyping. Instead of talk, talk, talk, we want you to do it. So this is my warning again. This is going to involve some face‑to‑face real‑life interaction. You’re going to need to put away your device.

If you’re here, come on in. We’re going to do some prototyping. We’re going to get started.

So what you’re going to do is you’re going to need to find a partner next to you because you’re going to be interviewing each other. We’re doing human‑centered design.

I knew some people were going to leave. A little scary. All right. If you want to stay, this is your chance.

We are doing human‑centered design. Human‑centered design starts with people. In order to design for people, you have to talk to people and build a relationship with them. So get a partner.

If you’re staying, can I have your attention? If you’re going to stay with us.


All right. You guys are brave. You’re going to stay and do that. So you’ve got to partner. This is your challenge. You’re going to think about how might we re‑design the Museums and the Web conference badge to better facilitate connecting.

So, to do this ‑‑ first of all, I want to think about conference badges. They usually look pretty typical, though they did redesign this year. This is nice. This is different. Most badges look like that.

So, in order to redesign the badge for your partner, the partner you’re going to work with, you have to start with a conversation. This is human‑centered design. It starts with building empathy for your user. You’re going to interview your partner. We’re going to time it. We’re going to give you two minutes, and then you’re going to switch. We have some starter questions for you to ask your partner.

What do you like most and least about your badge? Why?

Why is the critical question. You’ve got to follow up with a why. That’s how you’re going to get to the deeper human needs and emotions of your partner.

What do you like most and least about connecting with your colleagues?

We’re going to give you two minutes to interview your partner. Then we’re going to call time. You’re going to have paper and pen. If you don’t have paper and pen ‑‑

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   We have stuff under the chairs in the center. There’s prototyping tools.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   If you need paper and pen, we’ve got it or you can take notes on your iPhone. We’re going to start now.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   Ready. Go.


>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   Two minutes has gone by. Switch and interview your other partner.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   Ok. We’re going to move on to the next step. Now what you’re going to be doing is working independently. You’re going to use your new knowledge about your partner, about your user you’ve just interviewed to sketch out ideas for a new badge just for your user. So this is working independently. We’re going to give you two minutes. Sketch on paper. If you want to make notes in your digital device, that’s fine. Think about a new badge specifically for your user.

Emily will time us now. You have two minutes. Go. You’re sketching your ideas.

Does anybody need paper, good old‑fashioned, analogue paper?

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   I’m going to use this opportunity to remind you that prototypes can be more than just physical things. Remember, they can be systems. They can be experiences. Just putting it out there.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   We’re moving on to the next step. This is what you’ve all been waiting for, why you came to our session. It’s going to be the most fun. You’re going to build a prototype. So we have supplies here in the aisle. You are going to build a prototype of a new badge for your partner. We’re going to give you four minutes.

I want to remind you of something before you start building. It doesn’t have to be perfect. It doesn’t have to be beautiful. And you’re designing for your user not for yourself. Whoever you just interviewed, you’re designing for them.

We’re going to give you four minutes. You can use these supplies. You can use anything you want to build your prototype.

We’re going to start now. The supplies are in little buckets along here. There’s some more up here.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   There’s no more in the front.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   The supplies are ‑‑ I don’t know where they went.   You have one minute left to finish your prototype. One minute.

>> Ahree Lee:   It’s actually ok if your prototype looks unfinished and kind of crappy. It leaves it open to more interpretation and interesting new ways.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   Ok. We’re moving on. We are moving on. And I am so touched that I got a prototype. I didn’t think I would get a prototype. Thank you so much.

We’re moving on. Now what you’re going to do ‑‑ ok. You are going to hand the prototype over to your user and get their feedback. You can ask them to describe what excites you most and least about this prototype and why. And if you could change one thing, what would it be?

You’re going to interview your user for two minutes. Then we’re going to have you switch time. You have to hand it over to your user. That’s awesome. Marco put his on. That’s what I want to see. You have to let go and give it to your user. Yes. Yes. You can describe it. If it’s a thing, describe it. Yes.


>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   If you haven’t switched, make sure you switch. If you haven’t taken turns, go ahead and switch.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   Ok. Congratulations. You’ve just completed your first design cycle.



Congratulations. You just went through an entire design cycle. You had, what, four minutes to build those prototypes? Imagine what you could have done if we had given you more time. We just wanted to give you a little taste of the power of designing for a user and building a quick and rapid prototype.

We want you to ‑‑ we’re going to reflect on this really briefly and then move on and go up to the 30,000‑foot view and talk about how we’ve been using this in a practical application.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   Did you have fun?

>> Yeah!

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   Does anyone want to share any feedback or anything about their process? I’m seeing a mask.


You get 10 seconds to share. Go.

>> Made the mask. It’s a way ‑‑ people look at me.

>> He said, “People look at my badge rather than my face. So ‑‑

>> Looking this way. So look this way.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   So you listened to what he had to say and created a solution.

Anybody else?


Good job.

>> Came up with a great idea of the pocket on the back for cards, a little pocket on the back of the badge where you could slip in business cards.


>> This is one that Alicia created for me. It has lists of my interests and recent projects that I’m working on that are listed here. So it opens a conversation, easy talking points to meet new people.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   Did anybody have an a‑ha moment during the process? Yeah?

>> Yes. We kind of did. We both decided that we actually didn’t like badges; that they felt like you were walking billboards and it’s only serving maybe the branding for the company and for the security guards but it didn’t actually help initiate conversation or help us get to know each other better. So we just sort of dispensed with it and went with a wrist band that would maybe have the Museums and Web logo and would have to talk to each other. And even the same comment about not having to look at a woman’s chest. It’s embarrassing.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   One more? Anybody?

>> I have one.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   Perfect.

>> We had the same a‑ha moment. We are totally different sizes. The badge drops at different places. And if it’s too low, people catch you looking for their name when they think you already know their name. So we’ve dispersed with the badge. We said everyone here has a phone with them. And so we’re going to make a little like RFID that would say Museums and the Web.

And what Kili liked about the current badge was that your name is the biggest so that when you got close to someone, it would pop up big, Kili, then would scroll it would say what she’s looking to do at this conference. And she’s looking to find out about apps.

So, and then we also, what we didn’t like about networking is sometimes you can get cornered in a wall and you’re like: Oh my God, I got to get out of this. This is a short conference. So you can star your thing and it would ring in five minutes. I got this call. I’ll see you later.



>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   So shocking that the location‑based stuff came from the Cleveland people. Right?

Ok. Thank you all so much for participating. What I want to encourage you to do is please take a photo of your prototype and Tweet it with our #mw2014proto.

Thank you so much. Give yourselves a round of applause.

We’re not done.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   We’re not done. Now you can get back on your phones and start Tweeting.

>> Ahree Lee:   So now we’re going to see some examples, some real‑world examples of prototypes. There’s a long history of making prototypes of physical things. And that’s talked about in our papers. We are not going to talk about it here. We are going to talk about some other things now.

I’m going to talk about two digital projects that I worked on when I was at the Getty this past year. The first is the redesign of the Getty’s exhibition pages. So the group that worked on this was about 15 people it included curators, designers, editors and even some people from upper management. We worked together to figure out how he can would make the exhibition pages work better for various audiences which included general visitors, scholars, and a group of visitors we called enthusiasts.

We did a one‑week design cycle, design thinking cycle, a whole group and then another one‑week design thinking cycle with a smaller subset of this group. And most the people on this team had never used design thinking before.

So these are some of the prototypes that the team created. The bottom right you can see that’s an exhibition web page. This is an exhibition page that tells you about the exhibitions going on.     This over here is a mobile app. And over there is actually in gallery signage. So you can see it’s all incredibly rough. It’s made out of the same kinds of things you just used to make your new badges.

We showed them ‑‑ we made these in about two or three hours; so, incredibly fast. And we show them to visitors and curators and scholars and got feedback on them. The curators and scholars we had invited in advance, the general visitors we just approached in the museum.

So this is us working on this project. It’s really messy. There’s paper everywhere. There is lots of office supplies. It’s really fun.

The second example is a little higher fidelity but not much. These are used ‑‑ these are made using balsamiq, which is a wireframing tool. It’s not designed to make prototypes with but people use it to make prototypes with. Anyway.

This is my Scolari presentation about a 17th Century Italian manuscript. We wanted to see if scholars understood how to navigate this and used the resources in here. So we made a prototype. We had more of a control test than the previous example. We had a facilitator leading, inviting scholars through the site page‑by‑page and asked for their feedback.

So these are a little more high fidelity than the other examples but they’re still really rough.

There’s been another iteration of these since then. And it’s a little more high fidelity but it’s also not the final form that it’s going to take. And they were done in design. It actually looked really different from what you see here now because we got feedback and the whole thing has changed since then.

So some of you may be thinking, really? Low fidelity? And it actually works. People are a lot more open to giving feedback to something that looks intentionally rough because you’re not being presented a final thing. They’re not thinking I’m going to piss off this person who worked so hard on making this beautiful polished thing. So you get really interesting feedback from people.

And then you can gloss over little details of interaction experiences. Like one time in this project we were arguing over whether this one area should have a dropdown menu or should be an accordion. Then we realized, we just need to know if these people want this information in this place at all. And then you can kind of make something a little rough that doesn’t present that issue.

And you can think big. You can think about things that are beyond the scope of the project.

For example, this was an exhibition web page project, but we had in-gallery signage, we had maps. We were trying to get at this idea of people giving ‑‑ getting a starting point in an exhibition when they don’t really know anything about the subject.

And through that, we found out some information ‑‑ we found out, yes, people did want that kind of information. It was validated, so we found a way to put that into the next version of our prototypes.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   I want to talk about prototyping in‑person interactions, which is ‑‑ did anyone prototype something that wasn’t a physical thing?

Nobody did? Ok. Do we have any?

So prototyping can be used for things that are not things. This is a prototype here at the National Air and Space Museum. I worked with them in December. We were prototyping a new location for the information desk, new staffing models. You can see it’s pretty rough. It was really easy, done really quickly to prototype around traffic flow and way finding in the museum.

Liz, right here. This is at the Getty over the summer in a workshop I did with the team there. You were prototyping a Kids’ Butler where parents could come to the museum and drop their kids off with a butler service that would watch your kids so you could enjoy the museum without your kids. And one of the big insights ‑‑ I remember their team had, parents were really weary of leaving their kids with strangers, obviously, and wanted to know what kind of insurance the museum had. Because one of the options you had was that they would take the kids off to do activities around L.A. So that was a really interesting finding. We found out very quickly by going out into the galleries of the Getty Villa with this sign.

I wanted to show you that you can prototype things that are more experiences and services. This is one of my favorite prototype pictures. This is Balboa Park. We were prototyping new ways to improve the visitor experience in the park. This was a prototype of an electric self‑driving car that visitors could check out and take around the park. You could see it’s made out of little kids’ school chairs and cardboard boxes. What you can’t see is the steering wheel is a paper plate. There’s a touchscreen made out of Post‑its where you could navigate around the park.

One of the things we found in testing is kids wanted to grab the steering wheel and parents thought: Oh, wouldn’t it be good if my kid could actually maneuver the steering wheel but then I could take over so they won’t crash the car? So you would have a little fake steering wheel for the kid and the parent could have the real steering wheel. It was something the team never thought about. So they stuck another plate there and had a family try it where the kid could pretend they were driving. These were things we learned really quickly, with the paper plate in the park.

Structures. Emily will talk about prototyping in a more abstract way.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   So something that we have thought a lot about as we’ve been writing this paper is all the different way that you can test something. At the Getty, it’s very hard to change things. I have a couple of colleagues up here and they’re like, yup. So it’s very difficult. If you want to change your department structure, it takes a long time.

Instead of doing that, what I’ve been trying to do in my department, which is education, is create different groups that are informal and operate outside of the department structure but create new ways for us to interact across silos.

You’ll see in this photo we have people from our family audiences, artists, school, as well as somebody from the web group. We’ve been using this model as a way to sort of test what we need to be talking about and what we’re missing. It’s a place where new ideas can bubble to the surface. It’s been really successful I think for my group.

They’re actively prototyping in this photo as you can see. I think it’s ‑‑ well, that’s meta. They are prototyping while the group itself is a prototype. I’ve been trying to use it as a way to sort of conceive of how we can interact with each other. And I think that if you begin to follow that line of thought, you can see how you could prototype new ways of reporting, new ways of managing projects within your institution. Yeah, I think there’s a lot of possibility there.

>> Ahree Lee:   So now, you are all prototypers. You all just prototyped something which seemed like it was pretty successful and it sounded like you guys were having fun. It looked like it from here, anyway. What I’ve seen is pretty cool.

You should all start prototyping now at home. It’s really easy. It’s fun. You can start with a small project or a project that you control on your own, so you can decide whether or not you want to prototype. You can start with people who are excited about it. You can find a colleague who’s also excited about prototyping or tell your colleagues about it and if they get excited, then you know who you’re going to start prototyping with.

And change will bubble up. Even if you are afraid that people above you are not excited about it or want to quash it, things have a way of finding a way to happen. If you want it to happen, you’ll find people. And those people will find you. It will work out.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   That’s Ahree’s boss in that picture, totally digging it. Jack Levin.

>> Ahree Lee:   It bubbled up to him, that’s for sure.

Another thing that can help is you can find a space where you can leave all of your prototype and results of prototyping, all of your design thinking stuff around. We don’t have a lot of walls in my immediate work space, but we have a lot of windows. So we made do with what we had.

This is the digital publication project that I showed you earlier. We have the war room wall where we put all of our stuff up. Our schedule, our wire frames, notes, things like that.

This is my co‑worker’s desk. Mine is just behind it. And people walk by and go: What is that? Or if they know what it is: Wow, you’re doing this already? How did that go? They see some designs that I’m working on and say: How’s that presentation going? They get ideas or they give us ideas. So that physical act of leaving stuff out can lead to things, too.

So to help you get started with this, we made a little worksheet.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   Does everybody have one?

>> Ahree Lee:   Does everybody have one?

Just take a minute and write down some ideas for how you can get started with prototyping back at work. There are four areas you can fill out. Try to fill them all out if you can.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   We’re going to give you a minute to fill it out. You’re going to share what you’ve come up with your partner. It can be the same partner or someone else.

>> Ahree Lee:   Find your partner from the prototyping. And share your ideas for starting prototyping at work for one minute.

>> Ahree Lee:  Ok. We’re going to wind this down a little now. You can continue your conversations after the session.


So we have some resources for you. The first link is to our paper on the Museums and the Web website. The second one is Design Thinking for Museums, Dana’s website about design thinking and the museum context which has resources there, too. And the third is the dSchool at Stanford where there are a lot of resources for running not only prototype sessions but design thinking sessions in general, lots of papers and other resources. And then the contact information for all three of us.

Don’t forget to Tweet your pretty prototypes.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   We want to open it up to questions. Look how much we just did in 45 minutes. It’s pretty amazing what you guys made in five minutes’ time. We want to open it up for questions, comments, thoughts. Marco?

>> My question is ‑‑ it’s easy and more effective maybe to prototyping in the physical space where more and more happens that the design firms on the West Coast and the museum is in the East Coast. Have you ever experimented the prototyping using some tools, the web, or something like that? What is your point of view about that?

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   Using balsamiq to do digital prototyping. It doesn’t have to be physical. I really like doing starting with physical. I think there’s just nothing ‑‑ that’s such an important experience to start with, the physical prototype. I think it forces you to work quickly and not get invested in it and not start noodling over how perfect it looks, even if it’s something digital.

>> There is not any web tool?

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   I like physical. I don’t know if you guys want to add to it. Even if it’s something digital, I like to start with the physical that gets you in a certain mindset. I think it’s critical.

>> Ahree Lee:   I think the biggest problem in prototyping with teams that are in different locations is not necessarily the tools but it’s the tools for making the prototypes, the tools for communicating. You have to have a time where you can all get together and you need to be able to have tools that you both can access. And maybe you can share files back and forth or having v a common space where you can have a base camp site or something like that.

>> Thank you.

>> I was wondering, too, if you’ve done facilitations where there was a group of people maybe in a room and you might Skype into it or that kind of thing?

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   Oh, yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Definitely. If there are people working together in the same space, you could have someone facilitate remotely. I’ve done that many times. I like to have the people together working with physical paper and pen. That’s my preference.

There was a question.

>> Building off that idea, how long would you recommend the sessions last, especially when you’re starting out? Would it be an hour, two hours, three hours? Can you give a better sense of that?

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   When I started the groups at the Getty, they were originally an hour, once a month. It’s really difficult to get into prototyping in an hour.

So if you’re going to have a prototyping session where you want people to build and talk to each other or maybe go out on the floor and talk to visitors, I highly recommend setting aside two hours, even maybe doing it every other month. When you get into this process, as you guys saw, you want to, like, iterate, go to the next step, fix what’s wrong. And go out and test again. So I would give yourself flexibility and a little bit of breathing room. It can take a while.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   I disagree with you. I would not spend more than 45 minutes on a prototype and go out and test it and then come back and iterate.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   But that will take two hours.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   Ok.


But I would never give a team two hours because then you’re going to get into the noodling discussions about how does it look. Is this the accurate, perfect information? Like forget that. You’ve got to start testing it and going out and putting it in front of users and iterate. But, yes. If you fold in the time. Ok.

>> Have you ever tried to prototype the exhibition design process? So kind of getting the curator, the designer, the interpretation, the education, whatever, together and just create a prototype together of the exhibition space and sort of somewhat test it with visitors?

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   That’s what the Queensland Museum did. They co‑authored the paper with us. They talk about it in our paper. I don’t feel I can talk about it. They did that.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   The example I’ll give is that in order to test movement through the space, they physically taped out in the actual exhibition space the sort of forms that they wanted to have. So then they can see in the space as people were walking around these, is it going to be wide enough. So they’re very committed to having sort of a rougher look at their galleries. I don’t know if other institutions would go for that. But they are definitely into testing in the live exhibition space.

>> Ahree Lee: Museums for children tend to do this more often anyway. It’s not usually part of their practice.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   Over here?

>> How do you get sort of motivated to prototype? Sometimes people get nervous in brainstorming situations. And some people are better at it. What are some techniques that you think about in terms of getting people prepared to do it and then setting their goals to understand what the results should be?

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   It’s a big part of the job. I would say Dana has some great information in her paper from last year that talks about warming up, warming up people, starting maybe with smaller groups, people who are already excited so you can build into it.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   I have a couple of blog posts about games I do to warm groups up. And I even have a game where you make someone a gift out of Post-Its. It’s a game that gets you in the frame of mind. You make someone a gift and you can’t talk it and hand it to them. You have to let them react. It’s all about the user’s reaction. I do all of these warming up games just to get people in the mindset.

I brought you in cold. This was a great group, but normally ‑‑ we didn’t really warm up. We dove in. I would want to ease you in more especially in an organization where there’s more resistance if you’re doing this with your colleagues. I did this ‑‑ it’s hard internally if you’re doing this with your colleagues. I started with small groups and a low time commitment and warming everybody up. Because I definitely had the crossed arms and, you know, you got to ease into it.

>> Ahree Lee:   And also, if you go to the Stanford dSchool website, they have a one‑hour video that leads you through that whole ‑‑ it’s a one‑hour design thinking process that includes design prototyping. You can get them interested in it and then have these people kind of see other groups that you work with.

>> And for those in Europe, there’s a sister organization, design school thinking in Berlin. They have the same procedures. They go on tour as well. It’s kind of not on the premises only.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   Sure. That’s the [Inaudible]. Yes. The sister school.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   In the white sweater.

>> We’re trying to adopt a design thinking and prototyping at my institution. It’s happened a few times where we’ll start the prototyping very early, paper prototyping process or even before we start that process where the idea gets out there or some prototypes get out there and then the idea kind of gets taken over and co-opted by a different department or superior and then it becomes a high-stakes project where you’re really fully design and launching something, not testing a concept. Just wondering if you have any advice on how to kind of help us make that shift and trust the process.

>> Ahree Lee:   Is it possible to invite the people that’s getting out to you, the design process in the beginning?

>> Maybe. I think once people get excited about what they see, there’s that kind of fear of failure. You know, we want perfection, so it just gets kind of escalated into a high‑fidelity project.

Have you ever experienced that?

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   I think bringing those people to watch tests along the way so that you’re constantly putting users in front of whatever you’re making and letting ‑‑ you can’t bring the staff to watch those tests. You can show them a video now, three minutes, five minutes of video, somebody using whatever it is. So then you’re doing that constantly. You know, a quick iPhone video. It’s like — I’m not just making this up. Watch these users struggling with this and listen to what they’re saying what their needs are.

>> Ahree Lee:   In that digital publication project, when we did those tests, we had other people involved in the project, including the head of digital ‑‑ at the Getty sitting in on these. So it was a small room. We had one or two other people in addition to the test facilitators. But just being able to watch these people, using these things, understand where they were getting stuck, and seeing things that were working well really got them to empathize with the testers and the people who were ultimately going to be using this product.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   I think we probably ‑‑ last question.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   I want to make sure we got Laura.

>> Yeah. I wonder since there is a culture of perfection in museums, I wonder if you guys could speak to the process of building prototypes that you get out on to the floor; like not just in the public spaces but actually in the galleries and have visitors testing in the galleries when they’re super rough. Because I can imagine there would be some resistance within particularly art museums to that and whether or not you guys have any advice on how to get buy‑in from staff about getting really rough proto types on the floor to test.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   You just do it. You just did it. You are taking a piece of cardboard out there for 45 minutes. I didn’t ask for permission. I just got a group of my colleagues. We did this at the Getty Villa. We took like cardboard boxes.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   Tinfoil frames.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   Out into the Villa. We just did it. If somebody doesn’t like it ‑‑ we spent $5 on the supplies. It’s a pretty low investment. I don’t know. That’s probably not a satisfying answer to some people, but.


>> From a practical standpoint, it’s a useful one. Asking for forgiveness might be better than asking for permission.

>> Dana Mitroff Silvers:   If you ask Visitor Services and Security, you have to fill out 20 forms and wait six months. Screw that. I just did it.

>> Emily Lytle-Painter:   I hate to wrap it up but another session is starting right away. If you could drop off the supplies towards the aisle, that would be great.


[The presentation ended at 3:32 p.m.]