20 March 2012

Behavior Driven Design 101

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Design is becoming an applied behavioral science, and your art school background is no longer sufficient, says Jason Hreha, behavior designer and UX advisor.

“Fields like neuroscience are starting to come of age, and are beginning to give us insights into human decision making. Companies like Zynga are taking these academic findings and applying them to their products to induce addictive behaviors in millions of their users. Other companies, like Path, are taking findings in social psychology and sociology, like Dunbar’s Number, and using them to build compelling user experiences.

The good news is that you don’t need to get a PhD in neuroscience or psychology to start applying neuroscientific and psychological findings to your work. In fact, with two models of behavior, and one behavior-analysis method, you can start designing behavior-changing products tomorrow.

In this presentation [at SxSW], I am going to teach you the neuroscience of addiction (engagement behavior), and show you how an understanding of the human reward system can help you build more successful products. We will also cover BJ Fogg’s Behavior Model. With this understanding of behavior, we will then move on to Behavior Chain diagrams – my favorite tool for analyzing the behavior of any given website, product, or system. Finally, I will show you how to mine the academic literature for practical insights that you can then apply to your product design work.”

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