I was asked to answer this question about Automation of UX on Quora. Below is my reply to it.
“I’m assuming this question was asked in the context of Interface Design.
Now coming to the question. Everything can be automated. It’s just that the automation system has to know every single parameter and the level of automation needed. I can think of three levels.
- Fully automated UX
The whole product life cycle i.e. from gathering user needs/problems till the product dies out.
- Semi automated UX
A supervisor passes in the parameters and a system produces results.
- Part automated UX
Either requirements (defining problem statements etc) gathering or conceptualisation (or any other part of the whole product cycle) is fully automated and rest is a manual process.
As any design would need to understand users and their behaviour and then conceptualise, hence any automation system can be broken down into two parts –
- Capturing user needs/desires/problems and understanding user behaviour.
- Producing ideas and Conceptualising around the above requirements
As you can see, if a system has all the necessary information, it can automate the process.
The biggest hurdle in this whole thing is that not only it’s next to impossible to predict user needs/desires, but also it is hard to capture what goes on in a designer’s mind while conceptualising (Considering abstract things like Eureka effect and a lot subconscious decision making).
A system can be developed to semi and part automate this design process. And we all know that design ui patterns exist. So we have all the dots required for this system to connect. But the rules of connecting them have to be provided by a supervisor.
I hope I was clear in explaining what I know.”