Response on: The Design Of Everyday Things – Don Norman

Chapter 1

From the first chapter of the book, I could understand a few of the key points the author is trying to bring across. Firstly, would be the experience of handling a door, having the typical “push/pull” problem. We all have encountered this problem in our lives, pushing a pull door, vice versa. Even though design itself have advanced a great deal, I feel that this problem has not really been solved, in a way, where there are people still pushing a pull door, up till today.

This brings me to the next point. Us as being human, are used to getting things to work through the method of trial and error. However, this trial and error method would mean that a design was not well-thought of and hence needing the user to encounter difficulty in using the product and learning from it.

The differentiation of Design Specializations was something new to me as it clearly allows me to understand the differences between the three design specializations when it could be easily mistaken for one another. When compared to HCD, it also gave me a clearer picture on what all these mean and how they relate to each other in terms of user experience. Beside understanding these differences, I benefitted from the examples given throughout the chapter and the dialogue between the student and mentor. Simple examples allowed me to understand confusing terms in regards to signifiers and allowance.

While it was insightful and enriching to me as I read the first chapter of the book, however, I would like to ask:

  • How is experience design different from ergonomics? Or are they the same?
  • Leading from first question: If I carefully design my products with human ergonomics and fulfil the needs of the target user, does it also mean that I have given a positive user experience?

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