Look for the Duct Tape

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  • Go around and find out what kind of little one-off tools people have designed. Talk to them and hear their stories. Look in their personal bin directories. Take notes and look for patterns. See if anything stands out, or if anything particularly compelling grabs you during the interviews.
  • Then, if you go off and build something new to soften a rough edge, not only do they get to remove the duct tape, but you have a bunch of interested users from day one. Also, just think of the goodwill that is bound to follow when they realize that finally, someone cares about the end-user experience, and is willing to adapt upstream to make their lives better.