Wireframe S3E2: Design Is Why Your Parents Can’t Figure Out Zoom

Wireframe Season 3 Episode 2

The second episode of our third season of “Wireframe” is out right now. You can listen below or in your favorite podcast player, and you can subscribe at adobe.ly/wireframe.

At some point or other we’ve all been guilty of poking fun at the inability of older loved ones to grasp various technical concepts or navigate various apps or websites. It would be funny if it weren’t so frustrating—and tragic—for everyone involved. This episode digs deep into the generational divide that often determines the usability of tech products and tries to understand the role that design plays a role in perpetuating this difficulty. From the episode notes:

Your dad’s dog is barking in the background, but he doesn’t know how to mute his video chat. Your uncle can’t get Netflix working on his new SmartTV. And grandma still can’t find where her favorite songs are stored on her tablet. Why is your family always depending on you for tech support? Sometimes design, technology, and getting older doesn’t add up. And if design is failing older generations, it will eventually fail us all.

We’ve got some really insightful commentary on this subject in this episode from folks like famed designer Don Norman; UX researcher Michelle Brown; Dr. Jeff Johnson, University of San Francisco professor and co-author of “Designing User Interfaces for an Aging Population”; and designer Sophie Kim from Studio Red.

You can find Wireframe at Apple Podcasts, Spotify, PocketCasts, Castro or wherever you download your favorite shows, and you can listen to previous episodes and find out much more at adobe.ly/wireframe. Episode three will be out in two weeks!