Users interface and the conquest of the Aztec empire

It was running the 1519 year in Veracruz. After the Centla battle, the local chieftains, trying to feast Hernan Cortes gave him gold, blankets and 20 women. La Malinche was one of the 20 girls. In fact, she played a key role in the conquest of the Azteca Empire.

– I don’t see the interface yet.
– Right dude, let me finish.

At certain time, Cortes found out that Marina (Her real name) spoke Nahuatl so he began using her as a Nahuatl-Mayan interpreter. She started serving as translator, negotiator and cultural mediator.

Gómez de Orozco, the Mexican author, noted that La Malinche was an important part of Spanish strategy, with her knowledge of native customs, by being able to interpret in three languages, thus providing vital economic information, tax forms, the rules governing family relations, the order and succession of kingdoms, and so on. Perhaps the highlight of her career as an interpreter was the first face-to-face meeting between Moctezuma and Cortes. It’s reported that, during that meeting, she earnestly favored negotiations over bloodshed. In a letter, Cortes wrote: “After God, we owe the conquest of New Spain to Doña Marina.”

Can you see the interface now? La Malinche was the interface between Moctezuma and Cortes. She made her job basing on the knowledge of the culture, the language, the needs and so on of the Aztecs, the user in a way.

“Making beautiful interfaces will not take you anywhere unless it is fulfilling your user’s needs in an efficient way.”

So, that´s an interface: A link between the user and our product. Based on user´s believes, his cultural baggage, needs and so on.

It’s about time you know your users, exactly like Doña Marina did know the Aztecas.

la malinche

References: Digital House. Tx.