- Paperback: 200 pages
- Publisher: Morgan Kaufmann; 1 edition (June 3, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 012375030X
- ISBN-13: 978-0123750303
- Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 7.4 x 0.4 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (94 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #541,121 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Designing with the Mind in Mind: Simple Guide to Understanding User Interface Design Rules 1st Edition
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"Take fundamental principles of psychology. Illustrate. Combine with Fundamental Principles of Design. Stir gently until fully blended. Read daily until finished. Caution: The mixture is addictive"--Don Norman, Nielsen Norman group, Author of Design of Future Things.
"This book is a primer to understand the why of the larger human action principles at work―a sort of cognitive science for designers in a hurry. Above all, this is a book of profound insight into the human mind for practical people who want to get something done."-- Stuart Card, Senior Research Fellow and the manager of the User Interface Research group at the Palo Alto Research Centerfrom the foreword
"If you want to know why design rules work, Jeff Johnson provides fresh insight into the psychological rationale for user-interface design rules that pervade discussions in the world of software product and service development."--Aaron Marcus, President, Aaron Marcus and Associates, Inc.
"As anyone who has taken a course in human-computer interaction (HCI) will attest, cognitive science textbooks tend towards the drier end of the literary spectrum. The achievement of this book in making the material easily accessible is therefore nothing short of magnificent. It discusses the relevant scientific findings without any lack of scholarship, but always with an eye to how those findings can be put to practical use."--BCS, British Computer Society Online, November 2010
"Rather than simply presenting another list of rules, it discusses the cognitive psychology research findings which underpin the principles identified previously by the author and others. In other words, this is a book about people, and what we know about them as users of interactive systems."--BCS, The British Computer Society Online
"Anyone who designs or implements software user interfaces will benefit greatly from this book. Whether you create desktop software, websites, or mobile apps, this book will improve the quality of your work. Johnson makes the psychology and physiology understandable and seamlessly combines it with software engineering… Designing with the Mind in Mind is informative, fascinating, easy to read, and, most importantly, highly practical."-- ACM SIGSOFT Software Engineering
From the Back Cover
Early user interface (UI) practitioners were trained in cognitive psychology, from which UI design rules were based. But as the field evolves, designers enter the field from many disciplines. Practitioners today have enough experience in UI design that they have been exposed to design rules, but it is essential that they understand the psychology behind the rules in order to effectively apply them. InDesigning with the Mind in Mind, Jeff Johnson, author of the best sellingGUI Bloopers, provides designers with just enough background in perceptual and cognitive psychology that UI design guidelines make intuitive sense rather than being just a list of rules to follow.
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Top Customer Reviews
Jeff Johnson's earlier books are more comprehensive on the design side (GUI Bloopers 2.0; Web Bloopers), but the present volume offers the reader deeper insight into the implications of a more modest sub-set of design principles. He uses bite-sized chapters and clear language to provide the psychological and biological background, often including fascinating research results. The examples he uses to illustrate his points are both compelling and accessible. (And politically correct: both Apple and Microsoft get some thumbs-down ratings.) The sections where he translates psychological observations into "computer jargon" are useful for engineers.
The droll headings and examples keep things lively. "Reading Is Unnatural;" "Our Attention Is Limited; Our Memory Is Imperfect": this sums up how I feel sometimes. I learned that the gap between what a user wants and what a user gets is called the "gulf of execution." And the usability test participant's comment, "I'm in a hurry, so I'll do it the long way." is priceless, as is the explanation: "Avoiding thought when using computers is important." (The participant suspected there might be a faster way to perform a task, but didn't want to take the time and effort to figure it out.)
Readers who implement user interfaces but don't have a background in cognitive psychology, or who have that background but might not know how to apply it to the world of user interface design, will get a lot out of this volume. Those who exist with one foot in each world will also enjoy it.
1. Apply the principals to the book. Unlike some of the other UX books that strive to apply the principles they teach, this book has good content but the layout suffers a little. (The cover is evidence of this since you can't read the words easily)
2. The book is written more like a philosophy paper than an easy read. At times I felt like fewer words would have made it easier to digest.
3. Some of the examples seem outdated even though the book is only a few years old.
With those criticisms said, the book really does have some great content and I would suggest it to others because it really helps understand why to do things. Understanding the why helps understand when you should and shouldn't violate the principles being taught.
Topics covered include:
How our visual perceptions are biased by experience, the current context, and user's intentions/goals;
How our vision is optimized to see structure; Gestalt principles of proximity, continuity, closure, symmetry, figure/ground separation and then how they are combined;
How structure enhances people's ability to scan long numbers; how visual hierarchy enables readers to focus on the most relevant information;
A discussion of psychological theory that indicates than we're "wired for language, but not for reading" and the design implications of these findings;
Limitations of our color vision and implications for how color is presented in user interfaces; the fact that user's peripheral vision is poor and common methods used to makes messages more visible (e.g. pop-ups, sound, and flash/motion);
Design implications regarding our limited short term and long term memory; how recognition and learning from experience for readers is typically easy while problem solving and recall is hard;
And, a discussion of time requirements for systems designers to consider.
Written in an easy-to-understand narrative, lecture-format with dozens of illustrations in each chapter, readers will find this book to be a delightful and welcome primer detailing the fundamental psychological principles behind effective design rules.
Highly recommended for college and university library collections as well as graphic designers and psychologists interested in human/machine interface design.
R. Neil Scott
Middle Tennessee State University
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very professional book.