User's perspective of a system

In this topic we will discuss a very important way of describing a system called as "Users perspective of a system or Behaviorial perspective of a system."

To understand the same lets understand the following real life scenario: Cars, Motorbikes, Laptops, Mobile phones, IPods!!!

We are surrounded by systems day in and day out. Our lives have become so mechanical that if one of the systems fails, we feel paralyzed. We are so used to these systems that they have become an integral part of our lives.Hence I beleive we know systems very well.

Since we use systems so frequently, lets ask ourselves?

What are the ways in which you can describe a system?

Say for example you have purchased the latest Blackberry Mobile phone. It's the latest gadget that you are flaunting. Now you are supposed to describe the same to me or your friend . What are the ways in which you can describe this latest gadget to me or to your friends?

In one of my training programs I asked a participant to describe his "Mobile phone" and the response that I got was something like this.

He started describing it in the following manner:

  • It has a phone book that can store 200 phone numbers.
  • The phone book has the feature of Adding/ Deleting/ Modifying/ Searching.
  • The phone has the feature of Connecting/ Disconnecting calls.
  • It supports features like Internet, GPS etc.
  • It has a 3 megapixel Camera.
  • It has voice recognition.

Apart from describing the various features, he also spoke about the brand, the color, the price, the performance, the battery life etc. This is the way any user of any well designed system would describe it. He would describe a system by its Functional and Non Functional features.

Is there any other way of describing a system?

A system can be defined in two ways:

  1. Defining a system from User's perspective or Behavioral perspective.
  2. Second way

Let's discuss the first way of describing a system; Defining the system from a User's perspective OR Behavioral perspective

User's perspective is one of the most important ways of defining any well designed system.

Hemant Jha
Founder - VPlanSolutions
Researcher, Trainer