The Studio at Nokia Software engages in interdisciplinary work to create advanced data visualization and sophisticated cybernetics for human-machine-systems in complex enterprise operational environments. We are implementing our home-grown QXbD, Quality Experiences by Design, meta-methodology to #MakeTechHuman.
Our community efforts as a member of CMP’s Design & Innovation Advisory Board, lead to Nokia’s involvement in the following conferences, which focus on HCD, Human Centered Design, practices:
- Design Thinking 2018, 2019 – both in Austin, TX.
- Design & Innovation Awards 2019 – Austin, TX.
- Digital Product by Design 2019 – Los Angeles, CA.
- Service Design 2017 – Boston, MA.
We are also a regular contributor to IEEE Communications Quality & Reliability, and, just recently, 5G Capabilities to Meet User Needs session at CQR International Workshop 2019 in Naples, FL.
The HFE2017 conference celebrated the pioneering spirit of the team at Bell Labs that institutionalized human centered design in the high tech industry all the way back in 1947. We are now implementing HFE2019 under a talk series program over the course of the year. Stay tuned as more information becomes available.
The above version of the Human Factors Engineering Manifesto was first released in 2017 and sought to share HFE’s end-to-end systems thinking in today’s digital world. We are making updates that incorporate feedback received since.
What follows is just a sample of Nokia’s public initiatives:
“Bell Labs‘ podcast series explores the human potential of technology. Many of the innovations we take for granted have been hatched over decades, forged by an unlikely and ongoing collaboration between emerging artists and the keenest engineering minds in the world.”
“As the science fiction of days past – self-driving cars, Star Trek-like communicators and interstellar tourism – becomes everyday reality, where will the next great ideas come from? Listen in as today’s most adventurous creators inspire their scientific peers to unleash a more connected world.”
“Nokia is at the dawn of a new era. Digital technologies – cloud computing, artificial intelligence, machine learning, the Internet of Things, and soon, 5G networks – are changing the way we live and work in countless ways.”
“Technology and solutions from Nokia will help power this digital future, and we are excited about the possibilities. We also recognize that we have the opportunity as well as responsibility to apply technology in ways that enhance people’s lives and, more broadly, advance humanity.”
“Today, we continue to focus our social responsibility activities on four key areas: improving lives with technology; protecting the environment; conducting business with integrity; and respecting our people.”
“How will the rapid advances in technology affect our lives at work, in our homes, and in our daily interactions with others? Here, we examine the human side of emerging technologies, considering the endless possibilities they bring and the complex challenges that they may bring.”
“In 2015, the WIRED and Nokia partnered to kickstart a global debate on how to make technology serve humanity better called #maketechhuman.”
“It was aimed at uncovering what worries—and what excites—people about innovation today, from the most influential minds on the planet to your next-door neighbor.”
“This effort involved 80+ luminaries, thought leaders and partners including Tim Berners-Lee, Stephen Hawking, Monica Lewinsky, Megan Smith, Sugata Mitra, and Matt Mira.”
“Nokia led a global debate exploring the excitement and worries associated with humanity’s relationship with technology, we sought to uncover the issues that mattered most, investigate them and highlight global solutions.”
Nokia Studio. 2000 Lucent Lane. Naperville, IL 60563. United States.
“Together with his identical twin brother, Scott, he has laid the groundwork for the future of space exploration as the subjects of an unprecedented NASA study on how space affects the human body, which is featured in Scott’s New York Times best-selling memoir, Endurance: A Year in Space, A Lifetime of Discovery.”
“Currently, Mark is on the Commercial Crew Safety Board at Space X […] and is the co-founder of World View, a full-service commercial space launch provider.”
Endeavour to Succeed. College of DuPage, Department of Physics. February 14 2019.
I managed to attend Captain Mark Kelly’s talk in Chicago just the day before I was leaving for Barcelona’s Mobile World Congress. M. Kelly’s presence and insightful remarks commanded both admiration and utmost respect.
Among many other fascinating topics, he discussed NASA’s “None of US is as Dumb as All of Us“ as a reminder of the negative impact of ‘groupthink‘ in the context of faulty decision making. Most specifically, he referred to dramatic mistakes leading to the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster, which disintegrated upon re-entry in 2003.
“Large-scale engineered systems are more than just a collection of technological artifacts. They are a reflection of the structure, management, procedures, and culture of the engineering organization that created them.”
“They are also, usually, a reflection of the society in which they were created. The causes of accidents are frequently, if not always, rooted in the organization—its culture, management, and structure.”
“Blame for accidents is often placed on equipment failure or operator error without recognizing the social, organizational, and managerial factors that made such errors and defects inevitable.”
Nancy G. Leveson, MIT. Technical and Managerial Factors in the NASA Challenger and Columbia Losses: Looking Forward to the Future. Controversies in Science and Technology Volume 2, Mary Ann Liebert Press, 2008.
Groupthink is part of the taxonomy of well-known cognitive biases and takes hold when divergent thinking and disagreement are discouraged (and even repressed) as part of group dynamics.
Hindsight is 20/20 and, statistically speaking, ‘black swan’ events are characterized by seemingly random surprise factors. Groupthink can obfuscate the early detection of predictors such as leading outliers and anomalies, which left unattended can overwhelm a given system over time… and be the source of cascading effects and critical failure.
Groupthink’s negative impact compromises any best intentions such as organizational cohesiveness in the spirit of consensus, agility, productivity, timely project progress and de-escalation management.
Often times, there might be neither adequate situational and risk awareness nor a basis for sense making drawing from the comparative analysis that comes with diligent scenario planning.
Individuals and organizational cultures with a succesful track record can also experience complacency. Over-confidence fosters the sort of behaviors and decisioning that served the group well in the past.
Though, when in the mix of a changing environment defined by new parameters under the radar, only operating within the perimeter of a given set of core competences and comfort zones, makes those specific behaviors blindsight and betray the team’s mission and purpose.
Many plans do not survive first contact (or a subsequent phase for that matter) as their implementation creates ‘ripple effects’ of various shapes and propagating speeds. Some of that can be experienced as ‘sudden risk exposure.’ Once passed the ‘point-of-no-return,’ if that challenge is met with neither contingency planning nor the ability to timely course correct, pivot or even deploy a basic safety-net offsetting the impact, the project fails to ‘cross the chasm’ and is headed for what’s technically known as the ‘valley of death.’
This was one of the key issues discussed by Clyton M. Christiansen when I took his Harvard class on the ‘Innovator’s Dilemma,’ and is also a key point behind Risto Siilasmaa’s ‘Paranoid Optimism’ as well Paul Romer’s ‘Conditional Optimism,’ all of which advocate for scenario planning and sensing optimization to be able to calibrate or re-assess the path forward.
“Michael Shermer stated in the September 2002 issue of Scientific American, ‘smart people believe weird things because they are skilled at defending beliefs they arrived at for nonsmart reasons.”
Groupthink can also manifest itself by means of ‘eco chamber’ effects’ as misguided consensus amplifies what becomes a “self-serving” bias. That is, in effect, a closed feedback loop process that magnifies logical fallacies. These can come across as reasonable enough postulates, though if based on rushed judgement and selective focus they can also suffer from ‘confirmation bias.’ This is the case when new evidence is only used to back-up the existing belief system rather than share new light.
In the context of Decision Support Systems and Cognitive Analytics, the above reasoning deficits become root causes of errors impacting operations. That can involve both (a) Human-Human and (b) Human-Machine interactions, as well as impacting programming work resulting in (c) biased algorithms and automation pitfalls when left unsupervised.
Carisa Callini. Human Systems Engineering. NASA, August 7 2017. https://www.nasa.gov/content/human-systems-engineering
Carisa Callini. Spaceflight Human Factors. NASA, December 19 2018. https://www.nasa.gov/content/spaceflight-human-factors
Clayton M. Christensen. The Innovator’s Dilemma. Harvard Business Review Press, 1997.
COD Welecomes Astronaut Mark Kelly. Daily Herald, February 13 2019. https://www.dailyherald.com/submitted/20190201/cod-welcomes-astronaut-mark-kelly-feb-17
Geoffrey Moore. Crossing the Chasm. Haper Collins, 1991.
MIT Experts Reflect on Shuttle Tragedy. MIT News, February 3 2003. http://news.mit.edu/2003/shuttle2
Tim Peake. The Astronaut Selection Test Book. Century. London, 2018.
Scott Kelly. Endurance: A Year in Space, a Lifetime of Discovery. Knopf. New York, 2017.
Scott Kelly. Infinite Wonder. Knopf. New York, 2018.
Steve Young. Astronaut: ‘None of Us is as Dumb as All of Us.’ USA Today – Argus Leader, May 13, 2014. https://www.argusleader.com/story/news/2014/05/13/astronaut-none-us-dumb-us/9068537/
Will Knight. Biased Algorithms are Everywhere, and No One Seems to Care. MIT Technology Review, July 12 2017. https://www.technologyreview.com/s/608248/biased-algorithms-are-everywhere-and-no-one-seems-to-care/
Digital Transformation drives today’s Workforce Automation and Business Intelligence (BI) initiatives where nimbler agile teams undertake tasks and jobs of unprecedented scale, scope and speed.
Digitalization also involves “Self-Service” business models which are based on the direct involvement of end-users and a frictionless customer journey, all relaying on seemingly instantaneous and automated mass-personalization.
Given that digitalization has become pervasive and that ‘making tech human’ has become a critical success factor, the new field of Genuine Intelligence (GI,) addresses holistic Human-Machine-Systems (HMS) leveraging collaborative environments comprised of networked insights, tools and processes. GI’s signature deliverable is Digital Decision Support Systems involving Integrated Workspaces.
This construct adheres to LeanOps and Quality by Design (QbD) principles for emerging technologies and, therefore, optimizes for (a) quality outcomes as gauged by consumer and operational experiences performed under (b) highly efficient operations and (c) advantageous resource utilization and effort levels.
Both value generation and productivity gains are constantly audited and iteratively improved throughout event lifecycles and over the lifespan of the system.
Jose de Francisco is a Senior Design Director at Nokia Software Group. His 20+ year experience encompasses multi-disciplinary leadership responsibilities in strategy, product & portfolio management, research & development, marketing, partnerships and project & program management. Jose is a Distinguished Member of Technical Staff (DMTS) and has worked with Bell Labs on next generation platforms. He is a Member of the Advisory Board at MIT’s Institute for Data Systems and Society (IDSS) and is the recipient of an MBA in International Marketing and Finance (MBA/IMF) from Chicago’s DePaul University as a Honeywell Europe Be Brilliant Scholar. Jose also holds a postgraduate degree in Human Factors Engineering from BarcelonaTech (UPC) and can be followed on innovarista.org.