Product Management and Solution Design Winter 2022

Cross-listed ECON 28 / CSCI 28

Class Details

In this course, students will work in small teams to design a software product that solves a problem of their choosing. To support this endeavor, we will examine, critique, and apply methodologies intended to solve these problems, including those developed by Marty Cagan, Steve Blank, Don Norman, Steve Krug and Eric Ries. Students will learn to act as effective product managers, achieving alignment between business, technology, and UI/UX design. Such alignment is crucial given that technology projects often fail not because of the quality of technical engineering but due to misalignment in these three areas. Google Glass failed to account for its price tag, fashion, and the privacy panic. The initial Obamacare website failed to address management issues and predict the volume of website visitors. Flexcube failed to update and incorporate users into the design of their product, resulting in a $500 M UX mistake for Citi bank. These organizations did not identify the right problem, or did not build the right solution. The underlying conflict is IT teams like to be told what to build, but users often do not know what they want or how to express it. We will learn how product managers and their interdisciplinary teams can bridge that gap.
The Class: Format: lecture
Limit: 12
Grading: pass/fail only
Requirements/Evaluation: final project or presentation
Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preferences: students will be asked to submit a letter describing why they are interested in the course and what they hope to get out of it
Unit Notes: Allan joined DataArt in 2014 through the acquisition of AW Systems, where he was a founding partner, and instrumental in developing the Solution Design Framework Methodology, a process designed to guide large-scale/complex technology projects to success. Allan now heads DataArt's Solution Design consulting group as well as their product management competency.
Materials/Lab Fee: $6
Notes: This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
Attributes: EXPE Experiential Education Courses

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