014 - How to Avoid Designing Only the Happy Path with Andrew Ditto

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Designers solve problems, it's what we do. However, when it comes to solving problems through experience design, we sometimes tend to only focus the "happy path" - the journey our users will take when they successfully complete a design solution.

But what about the "not so happy path"? What happens when an error occurs, or a certain user cannot interpret the design correctly? Many of us designers can admit that we have shipped designs that have only accounted for the solution and not the potential problems it can cause our users along the way. 

Andy and Patrick sat down with Andrew Ditto, a Quality Assurance Engineer at Canopy, to learn about how designers can get better at creating design solutions that also account for the "not so happy path".


  • What techniques quality assurance engineers employ to uncover bugs or potential user experience flaws in the design. 
  • How quality assurance engineers gain the empathy necessary to understand how users will break a design and how can designers tap into that knowledge.
  • How designers can learn to be more humble and parter with quality assurance to design "happy path" solutions while also accounting for the potential, "not so happy path" scenarios their users may encounter.



Andrew Ditto is a Quality Assurance Engineer at Canopy and a mad scientist who thinks Fahrenheit is BS and who the hell used Pascal anyway?