GEOG 583
Geospatial System Analysis and Design

Technology Trends: Emotional Design


This week, I'd like you to have a look at a couple of intriguing lectures on new directions for design, specifically ones that take advantage of human emotions as a key consideration. Emotional Design aims to create objects and systems that are attractive to people, based on the hypothesis that attractive things are more usable.

The first lecture I'd like you to look at is by Donald Norman, who wrote the first article you had for this week's reading assignment. Donald Norman is credited with the concept of Emotional Design, and this lecture is from his TED talk in 2003 (tons of great stuff at the TED site, so do check it out!).

Please watch the following TED talk video by Donald Norman, Three Ways Good Design Makes you Happy (12:48).

Use this link to Donald Norman's TED talk if you do not automatically see the video lectures (you need to install Flash for your browser). You can also access an interactive transcript.

The second lecture I want you to watch is by Stefan Sagmeister, who reflects on how happy moments in his life led to particularly good design ideas. We can't always be in a great mood when we're at work (and not all of us have the lifestyle of a high profile graphic designer!), but Stefan makes a convincing argument that getting yourself to that place will yield high-quality results.

Please watch the following TED Talk video by Stefan Sagmeister, Design and Happiness (15:26).

Use this link to Stefan Sagmeister's TED talk if you do not automatically see the video lectures (you need to install Flash for your browser. You can also access an interactive transcript.

Deliverables for this week's emerging theme:

  1. Post a comment in the Lesson 1 Technology Trends Discussion that describes how you could envision using the principles of emotional design in the design of GIS systems. Or, if you disagree that these lectures were on target, talk about why you feel that way. How practical is it to adopt something like an "emotional" design paradigm, and do you agree that it would lead to better tools?
  2. Then, I'd like you to offer additional insight, critique, a counter-example, or something else constructive in response to one of your colleagues' posts.
  3. Brownie points for linking to other technology demos, pictures, blog posts, etc., that you've found to enrich your posts so that we may all benefit.
  4. Remember, the discussion can be accessed by clicking on Modules in our GEOG 583 space in Canvas. To post a comment, click "Reply" under the discussion prompt and begin typing in the text box, or you can choose to reply to an existing thread. When you are finished typing, click on the "Post Reply" button.