Everything that surrounds us has to do with design. Sometimes we have everyday situations that make us feel like we’ve made a mistake, although it may actually be a design problem.
Don Norman’s example of the Norman Door helps us understand this.
Through the years, designers have been influenced by the design principles of Dieter Rams, recognized for his work as a Braun designer.
Technology and time have changed our way of seeing life and with it design, although I share the original design principles I have allowed myself to make my own interpretation of these:
Applying my redesigned principles I must analyze good and bad user experiences in my environment, for each case I chose a digital experience and two from analog life.
1. Mailchimp — it is an email marketing platform that I have used throughout my career, I have also used several of its competitors, but I always return to Mailchimp if the decision is in my hands. Why? It is very simple to use and intuitive but also the platform has a character named Freddie who has small animations that humanize and accompany you in each process, they warn you before performing an action that has no turning back or they reward you when you achieve a goal.
2. Shape O — Today I learned the name of this toy, I googled it as “Tupperware’s red and blue shapes toy”. It is a toy that was in my house when I was a kid and I have seen it in homes of many families throughout my life. The objective is simple to insert the shape in the corresponding space. It is so easy to use that a toddler can do it.
3. Hammer — Probably the first tool we all use, it is useful and it is easy to know what each side is for.
What I have learned from these redesigned principles and from the examples I have come across is that good design makes life easier and allows you to perform tasks in an almost imperceptible way.
Now let’s talk about the worst user experiences.
- Cancel a Creative Cloud account — don’t get me wrong, there is no reason to cancel Adobe Creative Cloud, they have wonderful products, this was a business transaction. Despite being a great product, its platform for managing licenses is a dead end and a loop that does not allow you to leave the service. Do some research and this is known as dark patterns, which are tricks that tricks or apps use to make you do or not do things that are not your intention. (I leave a video about it)
- Puebla’s bike path — this can be a bit controversial, many of us saw the video that went viral a few weeks ago of the new bike path in Puebla and how many people fell when crossing the street as there was a new urban element that was not previously there, but observing the CDMX bike path and repeatedly seeing the video of Puebla’s bike path, I could see that some aspects were not taken into account. For example, before the zebra there must be a space for cyclists, which does not exist in Puebla. Another point that I could observe is that in some before the last separator (sorry, I do not know the name of the objetos that separate the bike lanes from the car lanes) there is a small post or planter that warns of the next crossing. I leave you a video of what happened in Puebla in case you haven’t seen it.
- Apple Magic Mouse — I cannot deny that it is aesthetic, it pleases my eyes that is true but it has some flaws for those who use it. If you are a long-time Apple user you will be used to the lack of buttons but for someone without previous experience the gestures that this implies may have a learning curve, I can accept to debate this point, but the following point is a clear example of design centered in design, not in humans. Apple’s Magic Mouse is loaded at the bottom, which makes it impossible to charge and work with it, unlike Magic Keyboard that you can charge while you work.
Design doesn’t just make things beautiful, it can also turn a simple task into a burden.