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"ACM SIGCHI WWW Human Factors (Open Discussion)" <[log in to unmask]>
Juan Lanus <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 14 Aug 2007 23:14:25 +0200
Shimon Reisman <[log in to unmask]>
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Shimon Reisman <[log in to unmask]>
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I don't realy understand why Juan is so self-inflicting...
I think he uses to muhc post-modern stereotypes...

Anyway, there are a lot of differences between male and female documented in 
the research literature.
A lot of basic research about our differences - the way we remember objects, 
space and stories, the way we visualize, the way we navigate, and a lot 
more. Some explainations to these differences are based on the theory of the 
male-hunter and female-gatherer.
Of course you can presume that if we are so different in so many basic ways 
(and we are) than we must be different in the more complex cognitive 
activities like design.
I know a researcher in the Technion the studied the design process itself 
from the cognitive perspective. I'm not sure she studied the differences 
between male and female - but you can ask her. Her name is Gaby Goldsmith 
(mailto:[log in to unmask]).
Hope it will help.


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Juan Lanus" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Tuesday, August 14, 2007 4:17 AM
Subject: Re: Gender and design

> Luca,
> Without any scientific research, I go along my life saying to those who 
> want
> to hear me these two things: there are more women than men in the
> UI/usability business, and that women are better.
> Once I read an article about a ongoing research in CMU about why there 
> were
> much many males than females in CS careers.
> For me it was crystal clear, keep reading. We men like power while women 
> are
> practical.
> For example a man might want to buy a Porsche because it *can* run at
> 200mph, while a woman would buy a Caravan because she *will* be able to go
> elsewhere with all the family and the dog.
> It happens that the max speed is 80mph, the man bought the power to run 
> that
> fast, albeit it's useless. The woman bought a less sexier transport that 
> all
> they will use, at 80mph.
> What we men like of computers is that we can make them do what we want, or
> at least this is what the advertisement says. Women don't buy that article
> that's why they shy out of CS courses, until contents are changed to 
> include
> more humanly aspects.
> But it happens that computer systems can really do things for the good of
> the human people, that's where women buy.
> Do a litle research. Open the "who we are" pages of several important
> interaction desig companies, like Cooper, UIE, NN, and the like. Go Boxes 
> &
> Arrows too. Count women vs. men and see. Alse, go to tue UPA's salary 
> polls
> and look at the numbers, already calculated for you.
> Computer systems are such a failure when compared, for example, with
> contruction or mechanics or electronic systems, because the development
> teams are staffed by men who want to do something bigger, men that go to 
> the
> media to tell how expensive their systems are )the more the better.)
> On the contrary, women are capable of building completely reasonable
> solutions that will not impress the media, on budget.
> Nearly 50 years ago the (one of the) most succesful programming languages,
> COBOL, was developed by a team leaded by a woman. Seven years ago many
> mostly-male teams burned a never-before-seen amount of money in the 
> internet
> bubble.
> Grace Hopper solved a problem with her language, while the internet bubble
> teams (remember bet on more bigger technology instead of looking 
> at
> the people.
> I envision the monitor screen glass as a divider of two worlds, one inside
> the computer populated by geeks, and the other in front of said glass
> populated by perplexed users trying to make sense of what comes from the
> inside. The people inside are the "interns" of Alan Cooper's book.
> Well these are my ideas. I want to add that I'm not female. I used to be a
> geek only many, many, years ago. Now I understood.
> Luca, maybe this is not what you asked for. But I think it's something to 
> be
> kept in mind.
> Ciao
> --
> Juan Lanus
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