The Design Of Everyday Things is a timeless classic by a usability engineer as he explores the psychology of everyday objects and their design.
Summary Of The Book
It’s the usability of a product that defines its popularity. Simple objects with clever designs are easily sold and appreciated. Donald A. Norman’s The Design Of Everyday Things is an attempt to draw attention to the importance of a user-centered approach to design. Donald explains his theories by giving examples of everyday objects. Over the years, we develop a tactile memory, we are used to doing things a certain way and if an object isn’t designed the right way, we instantly blame ourselves for not using it right. All through the book he points out that the problem lies in the design and a little bit of extra effort while designing a product can go a long way.
If you’ve ever had difficulty while programming a VCR or pushed a door instead of pulling it, or wondered how to get that tap in the restroom to work, then you can easily relate to what Donald is trying to say. Although, Donald stresses on everyday objects, it is easy to see that his principles are applicable to the design of interactive systems and websites. Chapters in the book include To Err Is Human, The Psychopathology of Everyday Things, Knowing What to Do, The Psychology of Everyday Actions, The Design Challenge and Knowledge in the Head and in the World.
Norman’s timeless ideas and his predictions about technology have been proven right over and over again. The Design Of Everyday Things was initially titled The Psychology of Everyday Things and was published in 1988. It soon became a bestseller. Donald popularized the term ‘user-centered design’, which essentially involves simplifying the structure of tasks.
About Donald A. Norman
Donald Arthur Norman is a cognitive scientist and a co-founder/consultant with the Nielsen Norman Group. His other bestsellers include Living with Complexity, Things That Make Us Smart: Defending Human Attributes In The Age Of The Machine, The Design of Future Things and User Centered System Design: New Perspectives on Human-Computer Interaction.
Born on December 25, 1935, Donald Arthur Norman was commonly referred to as Don Norman by his peers. He has a Bachelor's of Science degree from MIT, an MS in EECS and a Doctorate of Philosophy from the University of Pennsylvania. He worked with Apple, Advanced Technology Group and Hewlett-Packard before forming the Nielsen Norman Group. He was awarded the Benjamin Franklin Medal in Computer and Cognitive Science and was inducted as a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery.
A must buy
3 Sep, 2013
Awesome Book was recommended to me by one of my customer!
1 Jan, 2014
The Principles apply everywhere - Must read for all interested in Designing
20 Aug, 2013