As Evan Williams, cofounder of Blogger and Twitter said, the Internet is “a giant machine designed to give people what they want.”8 Williams continued, “We often think the Internet enables you to do new things . . . But people just want to do the same things they’ve always done.”
These common needs are timeless and universal. Yet talking to users to reveal these wants will likely prove ineffective because they themselves don’t know which emotions motivate them. People just don’t think in these terms. You’ll often find that people’s declared preferences—what they say they want—are far different from their revealed preferences— what they actually do.
As Erika Hall, author of Just Enough Research writes, “When the research focuses on what people actually do (watch cat videos) rather