by Meagan Lopez
Last night, conversation got heated in the Global Lives group. The visual and user experience designers are attempting to solve a huge issue – creating awareness in an otherwise shrinking world through filming people’s lives around the world. How does one scale empathy? Is action more important than empathy?
The user experience experts realized last night that people tend to learn more by interacting in segments. This is a problem with the hours upon hours of raw footage that Global Lives presents to the world.
David Evan Harris, Executive Director of Global Lives, arrives this morning, and starts by wanting to get to know the designers. Everyone introduces themselves and their expertise. Click here to read about the people involved.
Harris is then carted away to the other room to be filmed while the UX designers watch him on a streaming live video screen. Was this done on purpose to further enhance the challenge that the Global Lives project faces: a passive interaction with its audience?
First question of the day for David Evan Harris – what is the elevator pitch for Global Lives? What are the three takeaways that you want to impart?
Harris wants people to get a sense of an expanding vision of the world, understand that, in actuality, we know nothing, and finally, have people walk away with a deeper and more meaningful relationship with the world.
What is more imperative:to change someone’s mentality or to have someone take action. Harris believes it’s both, “If you change a viewpoint, you change the actions of an individual.”
Harris defines empathy as the ability to truly sense others lives; to put oneself into the shoes of another human being. Now, how will they use his definition to create a stronger connection between the world and the project?
Harris admits that Global Lives is a small organization with little resources. A grant is coming their way for $20,000 – he perhaps wants the designers to think about how they can best use this money. He is also interested in having the UX experts to tackle the perplexing question of how to get a broader audience on a functional website. Last year Global Lives had 20,000 people visit their exhibits and 23,000 people visit the website.
Finally, Harris would like the team to think about how can they manage the immense group of volunteers across the world and speed up the slow process?
Looks like the designers and sparks have a big job ahead of them.