Positive Technology

Since Google and Apple made announcements about their digital well-being initiatives, there has been much more interest in positive tech or humane tech.

What is positive tech?  

UX informed by the science of well-being

Why is it different? Unfortunately, well-being is usually not what developers optimize for.  We usually optimize for productivity, attention, retention, or monetary conversion.  User well-being is usually an afterthought.

What is well-being?

There are a several models but one of the more prominent ones is PERMA.  It breaks down well-being into 5 components:

This gives us a basic framework that we can draw ideas from and create goals for our positive user experiences.  For example, we may want to improve the quality of conversations between the users in our applications with aim of improving relationships.  Then we can test our UX by using a scale to assess relationship quality.

A positive product design process

Below is a process that can be baked into your existing product design work flows.   The resources listed below are just a few examples.

Screen Shot 2018-06-09 at 2.51.20 PM.png

For ideas here are some useful links:

Positive Psychology Center at Penn

Greater Good at Berkeley

Live Happy Magazine

Journal Of Happiness Studies

For Measurement

There are lots more but this will get you down the right path.

Perma profiler by Marty  Seligman http://www.peggykern.org/questionnaires.html

Stories

If you end up doing a positive UX or product, please share your story with me.

Zack Prager, Founder of Ransomly

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