Why attractive things work better and other crucial insights into human-centered design

Emotions are inseparable from how we humans think, choose, and act. In Emotional Design, cognitive scientist Don Norman shows how the principles of human psychology apply to the invention and design of new technologies and products. In The Design of Everyday Things, Norman made the definitive case for human-centered design, showing that good design demanded that the user’s must take precedence over a designer’s aesthetic if anything, from light switches to airplanes, was going to work as the user needed. In this book, he takes his thinking several steps farther, showing that successful design must incorporate not just what users need, but must address our minds by attending to our visceral reactions, to our behavioral choices, and to the stories we want the things in our lives to tell others about ourselves. Good human-centered design isn’t just about making effective tools that are straightforward to use; it’s about making affective tools that mesh well with our emotions and help us express our identities and support our social lives. From roller coasters to robots, sports cars to smart phones, attractive things work better. Whether designer or consumer, user or inventor, this book is the definitive guide to making Norman’s insights work for you.

What's Inside

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Praise

“The book pops with fresh paradigms, applying scientific rigor to our romance with the inanimate. You'll never see housewares the same way again.”—Wired
“Norman’s analysis of people’s emotional reactions to material objects is a delightful process…His readers will take away insights galore about why shoppers say, ‘I want that.’”—Booklist
“Norman's analysis of the design elements in products such as automobiles, watches and computers will pique the interest of many readers, not just those in the design or technology fields.”—Publishers Weekly
“Donald Norman’s relentless and exacting exploration of the universe of everyday objects has brought him to the final frontier of design: emotions. His exquisite psychological analysis provides a solid and reliable reference and a most valuable tool.” —Paola Antonelli, Curator of Architecture and Design, Museum of Modern Art
“Don Norman does it again! He asks the important questions and gives the right answers. I wish this insightful book had been available forty years ago so that I could have done a much better job as a designer.”—Dr. Robert Blaich, former Senior Vice President of Corporate Design, Royal Philips Electronics
“This is a valuable book... It will help the design world to do great work.” —Patrick Whitney, Director, Institute of Design, Illinois Institute of Technology
“Amazing…Norman does a wonderful job making these ideas come alive.”—Daniel Bobrow, Research Fellow, Palo Alto Research Center
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