This page describes the process to create personas and storyboards for the printers located at the Science Library basement at Brown University. I'm an infrequent user, and feel like every time I had to re-learn how to use the printer and the learning process was a pain. The printers are at a pretty open area, and I started my study by sitting at a desk nearby to observe without spooking people.
Mary did not bring her computer, just walked up and swiped her card, waited a few seconds, and got the papers immediately. In the interview, Mary told me that she’s been at Brown for 4 years and she uses the printer here very often.
Patty first came over and spent a while reading the instruction. She then went back to her computer on a different desk nearby. The back-and-forth travel between the print station and her desk went on for a few rounds. Patty eventually brought over her computer next to the printer to follow the instructions listed on the flyer. In the interview, Patty said she’s been at Brown for 4 years and she only uses the printer at the Science Library once or twice every semester. She was having trouble navigating the myprint website just then.
Luke swiped his card first, paused and stared at the empty screen. He then looked around, found the QR code, and scanned the QR code with his phone. Paused again, and searched around until he saw a different flyer, then got out his computer to go to myprint website. In the interview, Luke said he’s a first-year and this is his first time using the printer in Science Library.
Luke said he thought the first step was to swipe card. After realizing that didn’t work, he scanned the first QR code on the flyer, and was disappointed and frustrated to land on a page with a list of printer locations. Mary said she usually starts by Googling brown print, but the first page takes you to a long article and the link to myprint is buried in the middle.
Both Patty and Luke mentioned that there were too many flyers and only one was actually useful. Luke: “Why can’t you have a QR code that takes you to myprint? Why do I need to know the locations of other printers when I’m standing right next to one?”
When she first used the printer, Mary thought the file would get printed right away after submitting it on her own computer, and only learned about the card swipe step from a friend. Patty couldn’t tell whether her file got sent to the printer.
Nobody prints from the phone. Patty noticed the interface looks very different from the desktop version, and couldn’t find any action button. Mary managed to upload files on her phone, but had run into an error she didn’t understand, and she just assumed her phone wasn’t compatible with the printer.
Luke wanted to print color pages but they came out to be black and white, and only noticed afterwards that he had picked the wrong virtual printer. Mary wished that there was a reminder near the submitted colored pages, “maybe something like check the printer before you hit print, not every printer can print color.”