Affordances (was Re: iPhone Keynote)

16 Jan 2007 - 7:43am
1044 reads
Mark Schraad

In short, the brain stores and reassembles images, not words.

> On Jan 11, 2007, at 6:38 PM, Mark Schraad wrote:
>> I do not think you need formal (what ever that is) research, but
>> certainly insight does not come to the designer in a vacuum. Research
>> can be as simple as watching people try and pull a knob on a door
>> that is marked with the word "push".
> When I was leaving work last night, through the door labelled Push
> with the handle on it so that I *always* pull first, I noticed
> something out of the corner of my eye. I read the label -- or at
> least absorb the presence of it -- every time I use the door, as
> I'm reaching for the handle to pull it, but I don't read the whole
> thing. I absorb the "PU" part and don't register the rest.
> Makes me wonder what role the labelling has in informing the use of
> affordances. Not that it directs how we use them, but how much
> they steer us. In short, if the door labels were IN/OUT or TO/AWAY
> instead of PUSH/PULL -- labels which have different lengths and
> initial letters -- would it improve the experience? (Probably
> wouldn't fix it, but if I didn't struggle with leaving the building
> one day a week, it would be a win.)
> -- Jim Drew
> Seattle, WA

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