Clayton Christensen and Kathy Sierra at Business of Software


Just discovered this conference over the summer. It is happening in Boston in early October and for the unlucky ones being on that side of the pond and not being able to attend European Lean IT Summit, this undoubtedly is the conference to go if you’re in the IT industry.

This is quite an impressive cast with the likes of Joel Spolsky, Scott Berkun and, as far as we are concerned today, #1 Business Thinker Clayton Christensen and #hypertextual long time heroine Kathy Sierra.

Most of the previous talks being online, #hypertextual could not resist sharing these two. You will hardly find talks related to software product development and design as inspiring as these two. Both may seem a bit long (1 hour) in these TED days, but believe me : every single second of it is worth your time.

The Job your product does

Professor Clayton Christensen talk goes through some of the core ideas of his classic The Innovator’s Dilemma (one of Steve Jobs favorite book). He invites people to think about the job your product does not thinking about the features your product may propose to your customer but rather to understand what your customer is doing and how your product may help while seamlessly integrating with this.

This is such a wonderful talk full of hindsight, humility and humor.

Building the minimum badass user

This is such a joy to watch Kathy Sierra in pubic conferences as she has gradually disappeared from Social Networks radars after that terrible harassment story. This really is a huge lost for the community as, let’s put it straight, you will hardly find anyone anywhere as good as Kathy Sierra to present complex idea.

There is a long story between this blog and the creator of the Head First series at O’Reilly. Her blog (Creating Passionate User) has been one of the few that ignited the desire to start #hypertextual and though it has stopped in 2007, it remains arguably one of the most relevant marketing blog of the hyperconnected economy.

We find in this talk one of the most powerful ideas of CPU : you don’t want your product to impress customers, you want your customers to impress people while using your product. You want to help your customers feeling experts and badasses thanks to your product.  As such, this talk is a great follow-up to professor Christensen as it really focusses on the seamless integration of the product in the customer activity from both a user experience and cognitive perspectives.

Give yourself a treat. The transcript is available online.


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