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User perception using elevator joke

I am attending a startup lab workshop by Steve souders and he makes a very interesting note about user perception. I mean I had read about this in his book but he explains it much better using this joke. So it starts like:

An Apartment complex has two elevators and tenants are complaining about longer waits times and slow elevators so the owner calls a civil engineer and asks him what it takes to fix the issue. The civil engineer replies we need to add few more elevators and it would take 5 Million dollars and we have to close the complex for 6 months.

The owner was like hmm so he called an computer engineer and asks him what it takes to fix the issue. The computer engineer was like hmm i would need to first monitor the pattern over a time as to when and how people are using the elevator write and come up with some AI algorithms to optimize the solution.

The owner was like hmm so he called a systems engineer and he was like hmm all we need are TVs. The owner was like what? So the system engineer says yes just put some TVs and it doesnt matter even if its running crappy programs, all you need is to distract the user.


Moral of the story is that when you page loads you need to start rendering things ASAP, so that the user is engaged and knows something is going on and wont leave even if its slow.  That is the main reason windows and all installers shows a progress bar even if its not accurate , the user remains engaged in the progress bar and is constantly told that its coming , its coming :).

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