Category Archives: Design

IxDA conference presentations

IxDA conference presentations are here now:

There’s an interesting presentation by Sajid Sayed (an ex-colleague who now works at Philips Design in India) about a new interaction design model for personal infotainment devices. Take a look: 


Article on User Experience in India

Afshan Kirmani’s written this piece on ‘User Experience in India’ for UXMatters. I was one of those who gave inputs to Afshan for this story. The comments on the article are turning out to be worth reading as well.

Read the complete article here.

Research preview: Business related usage of mobiles by Bottom of the Pyramid users

At last, here’s a research preview (.PPS file | 2MB) of something we’ve been working on lately. In the spirit of ‘open source’, we are keen on sharing some of the work we do (with commissioned research, we don’t have that luxury of course). The idea is to create a dialogue, share ideas, thoughts among fellow practitioners in the research space, and with non-researchers from any discipline/background.

Here’s a brief introduction…

In addition to commissioned research projects, we, at Onward, also conduct on-going research across a variety of topics that may impact Technology, Mobile and Retail industries in emerging markets like India.

This presentation is a preview of a study that we are currently engaged in. The study is aimed at identifying the usage of mobile phones among the ‘Bottom of the Pyramid’ (BoP) users, especially those who use mobile phones as a way to sustain/grow their livelihood. We intend to document the users’ key behaviour patterns, trends and needs with respect to communication devices.

We would love to hear your thoughts/feedback/questions/comments. Your inputs will be really useful as we continue to dive deeper into this topic.

Design Summit in Bangalore: Day 1 update

This year the CII-NID Design Summit‘s in Bangalore. Just got back from Day 1.

Met with several interesting people (some for the first time)…Kevin Schmidt & Uday Dandavate from SonicRim, Tom Burchard from Continuum, Sudhir Sharma from Elephant (who announced their 6-week old partnership with RKS, which is an interesting development for the design industry in India to keep an eye on).

Other notes:

  • Ravi Sawhney spoke about his trademark ‘Psycho-Aesthetics‘ approach to product design. And what’s even more interesting, Psycho-Aesthetics is being taught at Harvard Business School. Very cool.
  • RKS Guitars…an interesting coming together of design & music.
  • For the umpteenth conference in the recent past, a ‘panel discussion’ ends up being a session where half a dozen ‘panelists’ are sitting up there on the stage and one of them go upto the podium and deliver a 15-20 minute presentation, most often a blatant pitch about their design firm…and worse, a presentation that has zero correlation with the one who presented earlier. So, where’s the “panel discussion” then? (Only Dilip Chabria seemed to be peeved about this phenomena…my sympathies with him…he actually didn’t have a PPT ‘coz he actually thought it was going to be a “panel discsussion”)! 😉

Looking forward to the break-out sessions and few interesting discussions tomorrow, like Fitch’s presentation…(Fitch has started up in Bombay and one of their first projects for the Aditya Birla Group is already Live in the stores) and the panel discussion about “Thriving in the competitive marketplace with design” with the big names, Kishore Biyani and Bruce Nussbaum. More updates by Friday….

Making research work

Finally closed on the topic for my ‘Rapid presentation’ at the World Usability Day, on Nov 30 at the Indian School of Business, Hyderabad. Here’s what it looks like:

Topic: Making Research Work
Abstract: Clients, stakeholders and at times, even design/usability practitioners express concerns about the impact of research…is it really worth the effort, time & money? This presentation deals with possible approaches & measures to ensure your design research, user research initiatives deliver on the promise of the power of research, and to ensure the business ultimately sees the ‘value for money’.

While I’m still putting together the presentation for this topic, I’d love to know if any of you have thoughts/questions/comments on what you’d like to see covered in this presentation. (I’m still trying to figure out how I can summarize all that I want to communicate in this ocean of a topic in a rapid 20-minute presentation).

Sorry, store’s closed!

Is this the only website in the world that virtually “closes down” for few hours everyday???? A classic case of technical limitations, rather than users’ needs, driving the specifications!


Upcoming in Nov/Dec

Next couple of months seem to be jam packed with events, many of which I plan on attending*. Here’s a quick summary…

  1. *Nov 15, 16: TiE-ISB Connect, Hyderabad
  2. Nov 16, 16: India Innovation Conference: 2nd Conclave on Innovation and its ecology, New Delhi
  3. *Nov 17, 18: Bar Camp 5, Bangalore
  4. *Nov 30: World Usability Day at the Indian School of Business, Hyderabad (I’ll be speaking at this event; details to be finalised, but the topic will ‘Design Research’ related). Among other things, I’m looking forward to visiting ISB’s awesome campus.
  5. *Dec 12, 13: CII-NID Design Summit: “Leadership Through Design”, Bangalore

If you know of other interesting events, related with Innovation/Design/Entrepreneurship/Research, please do let me know (email param[at] or please leave a comment here).