Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Emotional Design Part Two

1. "Whether we wish to admit it or not, all of us worry about the image we present to others--or, for that matter, about the self-image that we present to ourselves. Do you sometimes avoid a purchase "because it wouldn't be right" or buy something in order to support a cause you prefer? These are reflective decisions. In fact, even people who claim a complete lack of interest in how they are perceived--dressing in whatever is easiest or most comfortable, refraining from purchasing new items until the ones they are using completely stop working--make statements about themselves and the things they care about. These are all properties of reflective processing."

I thought this was interesting because this statement is very true and many people do say that they don't care how they present themselves to others but that is completely false in my opinion. I think that the majority of purchases today are all for a way to present ourselves to others in a positive way. Many people buy certain clothes to gain attention and get recognition as being in style and they try to act better then others because of what they where. People try to make there self-image look better then it really is most of the time. I think designers take this statement and put it into use all of the time and they are successful by making things people want to wear or want to use to make that person feel good about themselves.

2. I do think these categories are useful to me. I never realized that design could be separated into three different categories. I now think about all three when I evaluate products. I think that other phrases could make the categories clearer to people that might see the words for the first time. I think that Visceral Design could be changed to Impression Design. Behavioral Design could be changed to Function Design. Reflective Design could be changed to Self-Appearance Design.

3. A designer could decide which type of design is best by listening to the demands of the public and try to reach out to consumers by a certain way. They would have to evaluate their product and try their best to reach out and get customers to buy their product. I think that there are a lot of products that are more one type of design then the others. An example could be clothes. Clothes are more visceral and reflective then behavioral. With clothes designers are trying to make something that is flashy, colorful and something that is a good way to help someone improve their self-image. A majority of products now a days are based on appearance. Things that used to be based on behavioral design are now even being combined with visceral design. Microwaves, toasters, and other household appliances are being more visceral design and are being designed for appearance. They used to be designed with behavioral design and the function was most important.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Emotional Design Questions

1. I feel that the author's key points in this chapter were the three levels of design which include visceral, behavioral, and reflective design. Visceral design is more nature based. Physical features such as look, feel, and sound are mostly dominant in the visceral design. It is our initial reaction to products. Behavioral design more about what the product does and how well it does it, appearance does not matter. Reflective design is about a lot of things that include the message, culture, and the meaning of a product or its use. All people are guilty of worrying about our image and how we present ourselves to others. Another key point in this chapter was the talk about how designers rarely watch their customers use their products. Designers test their products with people in their company and not everyday people, so the company keeps adding features because their people can use the product and know what is going on but every day people might not know what is going on.

2. This chapter is pretty similar to the earlier writing. Norman points out many of the same things that he did in the previous writing. This just shows that some of Normans ideas are still being used today. One major difference is in this chapter Norman seems to talk more about the feelings that a buyer may feel towards products.

3. Something that succeeds as Visceral Design are movie posters, DVD covers that promote movies. A movie poster or a DVD cover could look very flashy and catch your sight that you actually might consider going to that movie or buying that DVD even though the movie might be bad. I think these are successful because they are eye catching and make you want to go out and get that DVD or see that movie just because of the look. A product that succeeds as behavioral design is my iPod. It is a basic white video iPod and i bought it for storing and playing music. I did not buy it because of how flashy it looked or anything because it is white and plain. It is successful because the iPod does what you want it to do and it doesn't have to look flashy when doing it. A reflective design success is clothing that is named brand. This is an example because everybody sees the symbol and I know I feel good where named brand clothing. It gives a sense of being able to wear expensive clothing making you feel more confident in what you do. Named brand clothing is successful because people often make a big deal about what kind of clothes you wear and it makes the person more confident when they wear those clothes.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

The Design of Everyday Things Part 2

1. "Designing well is not easy. The manufacturer wants something that can be produced economically. The store wants something that will be attractive to its customers. The purchaser has several demands. In the store, the purchaser focuses on price and appearance and perhaps on prestige value."
I found this passage very interesting because I never did realize the kind of pressure and restrictions a designer of products had. The designer must satisfy everyone in order to design a good product. That can be very hard to do with all the restrictions that designer has. Those include a budget that might not be that big, and with that budget they must make something attractive to the store and then the purchaser must like the appearance and the price of that product so there is a lot of pressure on the designer. A designer has a very tough job and must satisfy everyone which can be very difficult and I now realize that after reading this passage.

2. I think that this book continues to be influential 20 years later because technology has advanced so much and the world now has many different products. With these products people are still getting confused by the design and usability of the products. The advances of technology are just making things more difficult and we still continue to have the same problems that occurred in past years with technological advances. The design of products today are getting more complicated and nothing is being done about it just like the past.

3. The factors that I would have on a checklist for evaluating the design of a product would include the simplicity of the product, the durability, the visibility of the product by labeling features, and give opportunity for feedback. I would include the simplicity of the product because I would want everyone to be able to use my product with out having much confusion. If everyone can use my product I will be able to make a profit. The durability of a product is very important because no body likes a product that breaks easily. The visibility of a product is important because people need to see what they are doing so if they have labels for each button they will understand the product better and be able to use it best. In my mind feedback is a extremely important because with feedback you will be able to improve your product to fit the needs of the purchasers and that can only make your product better.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The Design of Everyday Things Questions

1. I feel that the author's key points in this chapter were that even the simplest products now a days are getting to hard to work and understand. Products are now trying to do more stuff making the product complicated to many people. Norman also made a key point about feedback and how that is not being used as much today as it used to making the companies think they are making products fine and they keep on advancing with that product.

2. A specific object that I have had difficulty using was a new DVD/VCR recorder that my mom had gotten as a Christmas gift. The design contributed to the difficulty because there were two sets of the same buttons on each side and at first it was difficult to tell which set of buttons worked with which function. The usability arose because some things were just not that visible and some buttons had different functions for them.

3. The designers of the iPod did a very good job at addressing the principles that Norman discussed. The iPod is a very simple product to use. All the buttons are pretty easy to read and use. The scroll wheel also makes it easy to scroll through songs and options if you are in the menu part. The iPod is a product that can be used by most people.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

"The Perfect Thing" Questions

1. The elements of the design process that the article illustrates are all of them. In the article it talks about the many trials that the company did in order to make the iPod the best it could be. From those trials was the evaluation part and the company would evaluate what they had to do to make the iPod better. The article also talks about the selection element at one point when Fadell shows three different models and Jobs then picks the third proposal instead of the first two.

2. I would use many factors to evaluate a "perfect thing." Some may include the durability, the size and style, the features of the product, and the price of the product. The durability would be important because people would not buy something that is not durable. The size and style would have to be something that catches the buyer's interest and is what most people want and like. Features of the product are very important because most people want something that can do multiple things instead of just one thing. The price would have to be something affordable for everybody so a lot of people buy it instead of just having the wealthy only affording it.

3. I own an iPod and I love it. I think that the iPod has many strengths and very few weaknesses. Some strengths that it has are the many features that can be done by certain types of iPods. There is an iPod for any type of person, whether you have 20,000 songs or just 1,000 songs there is an iPod that is right for you. The scroll is also a strength because you can search through thousands of songs and not have to go through each song. Some weaknesses include not having a power button, almost every product today has some sort of power button but the iPod does not and that sometimes can be bad. Another weakness sometimes is the battery life.

Thursday, September 18, 2008


My name is Evan. I live in Jackson, Michigan where I attended Lumen Christi High School. I played football, and basketball while attending there. I was also a member of NHS. I am looking forward to the class and learning more about design and hope that it will be a good time.