The UX of Stephen Barta, Genius

October 25, 2011
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Yes, yes, we all know, Apple is the sem­i­nal exam­ple of a com­pany that cre­ates full, sys­temic expe­ri­ences for its users. From the ecosys­tem to the indi­vid­ual user to the object itself, they are mas­ters of com­ple­tion. However, as a fairly advanced but not fanatic user of Apple prod­ucts, I’ve always had issues with the con­cept of the Genius Bar. It makes me uncom­fort­able. I want my com­puter to work always. When there is a prob­lem, I fig­ure it out myself. I don’t want some “genius” telling me the prob­lem is that I use Chrome and I should switch to Safari. I don’t want to feel bad for hav­ing six tabs and three pro­grams open. I don’t want to feel guilty that I have decided not to update my oper­at­ing sys­tem to the one that came out fif­teen min­utes ago. I don’t want to spend two hours with a “genius” in the store that can’t fig­ure out why my screen flick­ers only to leave my com­puter overnight for exten­sive test­ing and wake up to a peppy phone call telling me that noth­ing is wrong with my machine. I shouldn’t feel bad that my com­puter is almost three years old.

It’s a com­puter and I use it a lot. I want it to work.

Enter Stephen Barta. At the height of my over-use of quo­ta­tion marks around the word “genius,” Stephen over­heard my plight and took mat­ters into his own hands. He cleaned out my fans, ordered new parts, and set processes in motion that should have been started two months ago when I first brought it in for repair. Stephen made me feel con­fi­dent and taken care of, and he did it quickly, pleas­antly, and with a true under­stand­ing that his job is to believe me that some­thing is wrong and take steps to cor­rect it. Stephen Barta, you have sin­gle­hand­edly removed the quo­ta­tions from the word GENIUS and made it all caps. Thank you for under­stand­ing and exe­cut­ing on the user expe­ri­ence of the Genius Bar. The UX of you, Stephen Barta, is genius.

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