Perception is reality

P

I know I’ve harped on this in years gone by, but it needs to be top of mind for developers: Perception is reality.

That is, it doesn’t matter what your app really is/does – all that matters is what your customer thinks your app is/does. That’s why a buggy, semi functional, but awesome looking application can often get the sale (or user acceptance) over a solid, does-the-job, but awful looking application. Take the iPhone for example :-) (Jokes, people, jokes – don’t flame me).

Seriously though, the perception people get from using an app or service is sooo important.

I was reminded of this when reading the Engineering Windows 7 blog recently. Take Steven’s comment about the perception of UI speed in this post:

“I remember when I was writing a portion of the Windows UI for Visual C++ and when I benchmarked against Borland C++ at the time, we were definitely faster (measured by seconds). However the reviews consistently mentioned Borland as being faster and providing feedback in the form of counts of lines compiled flying by. So I coded up a line count display that flashed a lot of numbers at you while compiling (literally flashy so it looked like it couldn’t keep up). In clock times it actually consumed a non-zero amount of time so we got "slower" but the reviewers then started giving us credit for being faster. So in this case slower actually got faster.”

As a developer – yes, even the ‘I just code the database stuff’ amongst us, need to understand this.

Technorati Tags: Perception is reality

4 comments

  • Craig, database developers need to keep this in mind perhaps MORE than other developers. Think about how often your application is going through a loop. Even though it might be slower to add a progress bar, users don’t get that it’s doing something – at times, they may even think the application has frozen.

    More to the point of perception is reality, the little Fox icon that every app would show unless it had a custom icon has actually HURT Foxpro’s credibility in the world – because one bad experience with a FoxPro application would cause IT and others to think that anytime they saw the little Fox head, they wouldn’t enjoy the application.

    As you said, perception is reality.

  • Craig, database developers need to keep this in mind perhaps MORE than other developers. Think about how often your application is going through a loop. Even though it might be slower to add a progress bar, users don’t get that it’s doing something – at times, they may even think the application has frozen.

    More to the point of perception is reality, the little Fox icon that every app would show unless it had a custom icon has actually HURT Foxpro’s credibility in the world – because one bad experience with a FoxPro application would cause IT and others to think that anytime they saw the little Fox head, they wouldn’t enjoy the application.

    As you said, perception is reality.

About Craig

I'm the co-host of HubShots and the CEO of XEN - helping mid-large B2B companies with their digital marketing and lead generation.

Craig Bailey

Archives

Posts