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The Design of Everyday Things: Revised and Expanded Edition Paperback – November 5, 2013
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Even classics can be updated and improved Highly recommended.”
This book changed the field of design. As the pace of technological change accelerates, the principles in this book are increasingly important. The new examples and ideas about design and product development make it essential reading.”Patrick Whitney, Dean, Institute of Design, and Steelcase/Robert C. Pew Professor of Design, Illinois Institute of Technology
Twenty-five years ago The Design of Everyday Things was instrumental in orienting my approach to design. With this latest revised and expanded edition, Don Norman has given me a host of new ideas to explore as well as reminding me of the fundamental principles of great and meaningful design. Part operating manual for designers and part manifesto on the power of designing for people, The Design of Everyday Things is even more relevant today than it was when first published.”Tim Brown, CEO, IDEO, and author of Change by Design
Norman enlightened me when I was a student of psychology decades ago and he continues to inspire me as a professor of design. His new book underpins all essential aspects of interaction design, the mother of human creation. It equips designers to make the world a safer, more pleasant and more exciting place. The cumulated insights and wisdom of the cross-disciplinary genius Donald Norman are a must for designers and a joy for those who are interested in artifacts and people.”Cees de Bont, Dean, School of Design, and Chair Professor of Industrial Design, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
About the Author
More About the Author
Business Week has named him one of "the world's most influential designers," the influence from his books, essasys, courses and students, lectures, and consulting.
He takes special delight in the interaction of people and technology. "Develop the skill of observation," he councils: especially pay attention to the obvious. "Question the obvious and you will dis cover many hidden insights. What seems to be obvious often is not."
He is a fellow of many organizations and former lots of things, including VP at Apple Computer and even President of a startup. He has honorary degrees from the University of Padua (Italy) and the Technical University Delft (the Netherlands). He was awarded the Benjamin Franklin medal in Computer and Cognitive Science and is a member of the National Academy of Engineering. He is known for his books "The Design of Everyday Things," "Emotional Design," and "The Design of Future Things," but he is most proud of his students, now all over the world, who put into practice his human-centered design philosophy. his latest book is "Living with Complexity," which argues that complexity is necessary: Our tools must match our tasks. When people cry out for simplicity, they are wrong -- people want understanding. That is not the same as simplicity -- simple thing are often the most confusing.
He is currently revising "Design of Everyday Things" to keep the message the same but update the examples. Expected publication date is August 2013.
He lives at www.jnd.org, where you can find chapters from his books and loads of essays.
Top Customer Reviews
There are many important lessons but I found the concepts of discoverability, affordance, signifiers, feedbacks, mappings and constraints a simple, yet a powerful model to understand design.
I am not a designer by a far stretch but I can now appreciate good vs bad design with a deeper understanding of the designer's intent in building something. Even of design is not your field, you will greatly benefit from the book and you will realize that design is not just a touchy feely topic.
Although, I would have to say that for a design book, the images are not printed very well (in the paper back edition). And the during introducing the core concepts, in the first chapter, the author forgot to include 'constraints'. Also the order of these terms keep changing though out the book. This does not align well with the mapping concept the author so strongly professes.
However, now that this edition is out, don't get the previous version, since this one has far more relevant examples including hand held devices. As an additional resource, there is also a design course on udacity offered by Don Norman.
All three stars I'm giving this are for the content. Norman's insights and principles are worthwhile and very useful. I don't agree with all of them, but most of them seem sound and the ones that don't still bring up good points to discuss.
I wish an editor could convince him to cut this book in half. It's obvious that Norman is a academic and has been for a long time. He has that thing, that ivory tower myopia that comes off as pompous and self congratulatory. I had a really hard time wading through his never ending stories in the service of simple points. GET TO THE POINT, MAN. He also uses psychological terms that are terrible to try and parse (associative activation error? Are you kidding me? How about we call that the "ring ring, come in" error, so maybe people can remember it.) It's surprising that a book about design is so poorly designed on so many levels. Part of that is because this edition is an Amazon print on demand, and the layout sucks. Good lessons in here about how NOT to layout text. Part of it is also up to Norman, though. He likes using italics, I think as asides or illustrations of a point, but it's not consistent, and really just why, man? Why do that? Accept the cultural constraints of typography.
My advice is to read the last chapter, which is a nice succinct roundup of all the main points. If you want more information on any topic, look back through the book.
What the author does fantastically well is provide a broad range of 'models' for thinking about a user and how they might think. Another thing the author does well is show you why good design really matters, and is different from the 'artistic' design that wins awards. Finally, he gives you very practical advice on how to use models, constraints, affordances, and other tools to design a better product. All of this in a package that is entertaining, even if some of the examples appear stretched and outdated.
Other books, like 4 steps to the epiphany and running lean, have taken these principles to their logical extension: go out and get in front of users if you want to design. Similarly, IDEO and other design consultancies have taken this advice to heart. So while there are ways to 'hack' your way through the design principles you get in the book, from an understanding perspective the book really forces you to spend some time considering the challenges of design.
This fact, I believe, is one of its greatest virtues. Most likely, if you've spent some time creating something, you will not walk away with your mind blow. Conversely, if you haven't, there will be a lot of 'aha' moments. Nonetheless for both groups I hope I've explained there's a lot to like here.
If design is of interest, this is a great starting point.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is an absolute must read for people in the design industry (heck any industry)
Really helps to frame the design concepts and gives the vocabulary to discuss the... Read more
Excellent introduction to human factors. A must read.
Even after 20 years experience in human factors, I still find useful ideas when I reread parts of the book.
An interesting book that makes you rethink the world around youPublished 6 days ago by Amazon Customer
Somebody once told me in regards to this book, "when you finish reading it, pass it on". They were absolutely correct. Read morePublished 20 days ago by William Jenkins
Great! Made me see design in everything. Just read it! It won't disappoint you.Published 26 days ago by Jakson Rochelly
A good practical everyday book, which every designer should read and practice
Designers need to always practice practical thinking and to be aware of practical issues.
A really good read on the topic of cognitive science as it applies to everyday things and their design. I only gave it 4 stars and not 5 as I thought it was a little repetitive. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Martin Chesbrough