The Design of Everyday Things

The Design of Everyday Things

Book - 2013
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"Even the smartest among us can feel inept as we fail to figure out which light switch or oven burner to turn on, or whether to push, pull, or slide a door. The fault, argues this ingenious-even liberating-book, lies not in ourselves, but in product design that ignores the needs of users and the principles of cognitive psychology. The problems range from ambiguous and hidden controls to arbitrary relationships between controls and functions, coupled with a lack of feedback or other assistance and unreasonable demands on memorization. The Design of Everyday Things shows that good, usable design is possible. The rules are simple: make things visible, exploit natural relationships that couple function and control, and make intelligent use of constraints. The goal: guide the user effortlessly to the right action on the right control at the right time. In this entertaining and insightful analysis, cognitive scientist Don Norman hails excellence of design as the most important key to regaining the competitive edge in influencing consumer behavior. Now fully expanded and updated, with a new introduction by the author, The Design of Everyday Things is a powerful primer on how-and why-some products satisfy customers while others only frustrate them. "-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York, New York : Basic Books, [2013]
Edition: Revised and expanded edition
ISBN: 9780465050659
Branch Call Number: 745.2001 NORMAN 2013
Characteristics: xviii, 347 pages : illustrations ; 21 cm


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Jan 23, 2018

This book changed how I see doors.

ArapahoeStaff9 Aug 20, 2016

This book takes everyday objects and makes you see human-centered design in a new and different way. I definitely recommend this book for anyone who is interested in UX (user experience), as the concepts within this title provide insight into the inner workings of how to better design objects and things for users.

Mark_Daly Mar 14, 2015

Excellent introduction to the ideal of good design (in any medium) and why it's worth fighting for.

ajmccreary Feb 18, 2015

A clear introduction to design, showing how objects can be made to make what they do and how so self-evident they become easy to use; with luck, they are beautiful as well, and therefore also enjoyable to use.

May 31, 2012

A modern classic, this very readable book - originally called "The Psychology Of Everyday Things" - is a must-read for anyone interested in human-centered design. Often using dry humour to make his point, Norman stresses the importance of considering how end-users (which are often not the person buying the product) will interact with a product - from something as simple as door handles, to remote controls and computers. While some parts of the book may seem dated now, even they make pertinent points, and it is fascinating to see how prescient Norman's predictions were, especially in regards to computers. (But then, Norman went on to work for Apple, so he had a direct role in shaping the future he had already anticipated.)

Nov 11, 2011

This reads like a text book and may very well be one for industrial design courses. It provides both theory and many practical examples from every day life to illustrate the theory. Poor, non-intuitive design is in everything we interact with. How many times has an object failed to engage you appropriately and you've blamed yourself for not understanding how to use it? You won't after reading this book! It's bad design.
Note that the book can be read thoroughly or skimmed for key points or dipped into for areas of interest.


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Jan 20, 2017

If I were placed in the cockpit of a modern jet airliner, my inability to perform well would neither surprise nor bother me. But why should I have trouble with doors and light switches, water faucets and stoves? “Doors?” I can hear the reader saying. “You have trouble opening doors?” Yes. I push doors that are meant to be pulled, pull doors that should be pushed, and walk into doors that neither pull nor push, but slide....How can such a simple thing as a door be so confusing?

ArapahoeStaff9 Aug 20, 2016

“The problem with the designs of most engineers is that they are too logical. We have to accept human behavior the way it is, not the way we would wish it to be.”


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