UX- beyond the instrumental

Traditionally human-computer interaction (HCI) has focused solely the instrumental outcomes of product design such as the achievement of specific behavioral goals. Often disregarding the importance of aesthetics as an important aspect of technology. However, today it is clear that beauty is just as important of an aspect of technology. Just think about the success of Apple products, and how they redefined modern technological design. Beauty clearly goes beyond the instrumental aspects of a product, but is it possible to quantify? Non-instrumental needs relating to product design need to be better understood and defined. For example, ‘how does beauty translate into product quality?’; ‘which design features of a product are linked to which user needs?’; and ‘how do we design for such particular needs?’.  Continue reading “UX- beyond the instrumental”

Why asking ‘why?’ sometimes doesn’t work

The most tempting question to ask when trying to understand somebody’s behavior is to ask them ‘why?’. ‘Why do you prefer option A or option B?’; ‘why did you choose template A?’. These are all questions users might be faced with during a usability test.  The assumption behind this logic is that people have the ability to introspect into the reasons behind their behaviors. However, as we already know from Thinking fast and slow in UXpeople not always make deliberative choices. In fact, not only are we most of the time using System 1, we are genuinely poor at introspection into the reasons behind our own behavior.  Continue reading “Why asking ‘why?’ sometimes doesn’t work”

Thinking fast and slow in UX

We can all agree that our brains are sophisticated machines. They’re capable of handling enormous amounts of incoming linguistic information simultaneously processing complex visual patterns. However, even though our brains are powerhouses, they do sometimes get lazy. Most often than not, our brains don’t really want to think too hard or too much if they don’t need to. If there’s a cognitive path of least resistance, you can bet our brains will choose it. And most of the time we won’t even be aware of it happening!  Continue reading “Thinking fast and slow in UX”

Using cognitive psychology in UX Design

Over the past decades, psychological research has given us tremendous amounts of knowledge regarding the organization and functioning of human cognition. Below I would like to present a few basic principles of human cognition that, in my opinion should be embedded in all of UX design. I’m talking about actual theories stemming from empirical results, that have been replicated and solidified as the fundamentals of cognition.  Continue reading “Using cognitive psychology in UX Design”