Human Centered Design methodologies: Experience Design (part 1: because I am so very confused)

Today’s listening content and this too

The last couple of days, (yes including work time :O) I have been looking up other methodology of HCD. In summary; from what I have understood from Franki Simonds’ article, HCD encompasses the following four methodologies; my understanding is that you can’t do HCD without them and them being a stand-alone, doesn’t mean you are accomplishing HCD, you may be doing some other type of design??

(Just a copy and paste from a previous blog post)

  • User Experience (UX) Design
  • Experience Design (XD) or Interaction Design (IxD)
  • Service Design
  • User Interface (UI) Design

Image showing how HCD encompasses the methodologies and that you cannot have one with out the other. Source

Now, besides the fact that the majority of the sites out there are only referencing technical applications of design, more specifically experience design; when I am looking for an overarching definition, as design can be applied to everything. Example, colleague in my current role calls me setting up their training program on the off the shelf software ‘configuration’ and I call it ‘designing’ (always have, didn’t start when I started to learn about this)

So, again (also have to use the word ‘so’ less at the beginning of a sentence), I am trying to figure out what is experience design, more so, even more than the technical application of the term, it feels like it gets combined with user experience design, A LOT! When they aren’t the same thing.

Another thing that has confused me, is that when I look above at the first image that I have posted, it implies that experience design encompasses UX, however, when I have researched it further, I find this:


This venn diagram implies that Experience Design (known as Interaction design in the diagram, lies within the scope of user experience. If that is the case and I am finding all of this confusing, should I just give up?


No, I am kidding. I am not going to do that. I just wanted an excuse to use a gif.

Maybe I should stop trying to set a specification on HCD and basically just have a diagram looking like:


It’s messy, I know, I did a quick thing on word 😛

Because maybe, just maybe, interaction design and experience design are different as well?

Going back to Experience Design though, one source defines it as:

“A design practice focused on human outcomes, in particular the level of engagement and satisfaction that the user derives from a product or service and the relevance of the experience to their needs and context.” (1)

To be honest, that definition, after really thinking about it, does not give me a practical real world definition and it kind of feels like a service design thing all over.

So, as it is a quarter to 11, and staying up wont help me figure it out any sooner, I bid thee adeiu so I can catch some zee’s


To be continued; later…

Sign off: Fox




  1. What is experience design?