Issue 3 of Nudge Theory
I like to talk about something I call "The French Fry Fallacy." When people are full, they are really bad at guessing how many fries they will eat when they are hungry. Now, how many times have you been hungry in your life? How many times have you eaten fries? I don't know you, but I feel comfortable calling you an expert on both of those counts. And yet, with all that experience, we still estimate wrong.
Now imagine you're designing something for a user very different than you. How much weight will you give to their needs versus needs you've experienced personally? Our brains tend to value our own experiences more highly. This is not an unlikely scenario, since 85% of product designers are men, and 85% of product purchasers are women. That's how, when Apple initially released Healthkit, it didn't contain any functionality to track menstruation.
We have an ethical responsibility, as designers, to push past our own biases and check ourselves. Incorporating data into our decision making is a great way to do that.
How do you decide to buy a product? What factors do you consider?