Why We Fail
Learning from Experience Design Failures
By Victor Lombardi
Publisher: Rosenfeld Media
Released: July 2013

Just as pilots and doctors improve by studying crash reports and postmortems, experience designers can improve by learning how customer experience failures cause products to fail in the marketplace. Rather than proselytizing a particular approach to design, Why We Fail holistically explores what teams actually built, why the products failed, and how we can learn from the past to avoid failure ourselves.

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5.0

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5.0

Must read for UX professionals

By Paul Moreau

from Austin, TX

About Me Developer

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Easy to understand
  • Helpful examples
  • Well-written

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Expert
    • Intermediate

    Comments about oreilly Why We Fail:

    The case studies alone provide an very interesting read to anybody who has some interest in technology in general.
    Each case study has been thoroughly researched with plenty of references. The author also provides video clips to help the reader visualize the user experience of the discussed products.
    In addition to user interface developers or designers, product managers and architects will also benefit from the methods for avoiding future UX failures described in the second half of the book.

     
    5.0

    Advice for Designers and Engineers Alike

    By Ken C.

    from Hoboken, NJ

    About Me Developer, Electrical Engineer

    Pros

    • Helpful examples

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • All

      Comments about oreilly Why We Fail:

      Too many books focus on success but I feel the best way to learn is by studying failures.

      Prior to reading "Why We Fail", the only other book I read along the same lines was "Billion Dollar Lessons: What You Can Learn from the Most Inexcusable Business Failures of the Last 25 Years" by Carroll & Mui.

      I am an engineer, not a designer, but I often consult on projects where no UX person is hired, forcing me to assume that role in some fashion. I found this book to provide great insights that I would not have otherwise considered.

      For example, as an engineer, I focus on meeting the user requirements, but the case study on the failure of the Microsoft Zune music player (Chapter 5) demonstrates how much more powerful the user experience is over the feature set.

      I found it an eye-opening revelation in Chapter 9 that Microsoft's many expensive failures is due to its practice of sweeping mistakes under the rug and never sharing experiences with their product groups.

      Chapter 7's discussion on ethics is a valuable addition to the material.

      I highly recommend this book.

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