1 Attractive things work better.
What is you place two cashcounters next to each other with the same functions, but with one difference. One is fitted with a design appealing to people, the other one with a standard design just pointing out the functions, unattractive. Surprise! People perceived the beautiful design to be easier to use.

Noam Tractinsky:
- Israeli scientist (meer info volgt)

Masaaki Kurosu & Kaori Kashimura:
- Japanese researchers, early 1990s
- Studied and claimed that attractive things really work better, with ATM's in Japan (meer info volgt)

Herbert Read:
- Writer of numerous books on art and aesthetics (schoonheidsleer)
- Early 1900s
- 'it requires a somewhat mystical theory of aesthetics to find any necessary connection between beauty and function' (p. 18).

Emotions change the way the human mind solves problems- the emotional system changes how the cognitive system operate.
Emotions play a critical role in daily lives, helping assess situations à emotions aid in decision making. Positive emotions are as important as negative emotions.
Positive emotions: critical to learning, curiosity and creative thought, and today, research is turning toward this dimension.

Alice Isen:
- Psychologist
- Has shown that being happy broadens the thought processes and facilitates creative thinking.
- Discovered that when people were asked to solve difficult problems, ones that required unuseal 'out of the box' thinking, they did much better when they had just been given a small gift - not much of a gift, but enough to make them feel good.
- Discovered that when you feel good, you are better at brainstorming, at examining multiple alternatives.

Attractive things make people feel good, which in turn makes them think more creatively. How does that make something easier to use? Simple, by making it easier for people to find solutions to the problems they encounter.
The correct response for this is not trying again with more effort, but to look for alternative solutions.
Even though you are not focusing on the difficult parts, the tense and anxious people will still complain about the difficulties afterwards, whereas the relaxed, happy ones will probably not even remember them.

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The visceral is fast: it makes up rapid judgments of what is good or bad, safe of dangerous, and sends appropriate signals to the muscles and alerts the rest of the brain.
The behavioral level is the site of most human behavior. Its actions can be enhanced or inhibited by the reflective layer and, in turn, it can enhance or inhibit the visceral layer.
To better understand these three levels of processing a few everyday examples are given. riding a roller coaster; cutting food for cooking with a sharp, well balanced knife, a good cutting board, and the act of dicing; and contemplating a serious work of literature or art. These three situations all reflect to us on different levels. The rollercoaster delivers a visceral thrill of falling, the second the pleasure of using a good tool effectively, refers to the feelings accompanying on a behavioral level.


Andrew Ortony & William Revelle:
- Colleagues of Donald Norman and professors in the Psychology Department at northwestern University
- Suggest that these human attributes result from three different levels of the brain: the automatic, prewired layer, called the visceral level; the part that contains the brain processes that control everyday behavior, known as the behavioral level; and the contemplative part of teh brain, or the reflective level.
Each level plays a different role in the total functioning of people, and each level requires a different style of design.

The three levels in part reflect the biological origins of the brain. For simple animals, life is a continuing set of threats and opportunities, and responding to each. The basic brain circuits are really response mechanisms: analyze a situation and respond (visceral). (coupled to the animal's muscles).
Human beings have more developed ste of brain structures à they can reflect upon experiences and communicate them to other.
We can walk around a fence to get to our goal, and think back about the experience, reflex upon it and make a decision.

Lizards operate primarily at the visceral level: à the level of fixed routines, the brain analyzes the world and responds.
Dogs have higher level of analysis:à the behavioral level, the bain can analyze a situation and alter behavior accordingly.
At the highest evolutionary level of development, the human brain can think about its own operations à the home of the reflective level, conscious thought.
The behavioral level is not conscious, which is why you can successfully act something subconsciously at the behavioral level, while consciously thinking of something else at the reflective level.

Focus and Creativity
The three levels of processing interact with each other in so called 'bottom-up' and 'top-down' models. When the activity comes from the highest, reflective level, it is called 'top-down' behavior. Bottom-up processes are those driven by perception whereas top-down are driven by thought.
Terms called this way because of the structure from the lower interpreting sensory to the top layers of the brain associated with the higher thought process. These layers can activate each other from bottom to top and top to bottom.
The result is that everything you do has both a cognitive and an affective component: cognitive to assign meaning, affective to assign value.
You cannot escape affect: it is always there, in fact they change how we think.
If you are in a negative state your brain will react different to a situation as it were in a positive affect.

For example, whenever your brain detects danger, whether through visceral or reflective processing, your affective system acts to tense muscles in preparation for action and to alert the behavioral and reflective level to stop and concentrate upon the problem. The neurotransmitters bias the brain to focus and avoid disctractions.
When you are in state of positive affect, the very opposite actions take place. Neurotransmitters broaden the bain processing. The broadening means that you are far less focused, and far more likely to be receptive to interruptions and to attending to any novel idea or event. Positive affect arouses curiosity, engages creativity, and makes the into an affective learning organism.
When you experience much anxiety, produces a phenomenon known as “tunnel vision”: the people become so focused that may fail to see otherwise obvious alternatives. Design – and for that matter, most problem solving – requires creative thinking followed by a considerable period of concentrated, focused effort. In the first case, creativity, it is good for the designer to be relaxed, in a good mood. Stimulating the thought processing and being able to study alternatives.

So designers can get away with more if the product is fun and enjoyable.
Design requires creaive thinking followed by a considerable period of concentrated, focused effort. In the first case, creativity, it is good for the designer to be relaxed à in brainstom sessions, there is no criticism allowed because it would raise the level of anxiety among participants.
When the ideas have been generated, they have to be transformed into real products the design team must exert considerable attention to detail à focus is essential. Here is the time for the concentrated focus that negative affect produces.

How do you design something so that it can change fom invoking a positive affect to invoking a negative one? There are several ways:
- one is through the use of sound. The visual appearance of the product can be positive and enjoyable. During normal operation, it is possible to play light background music. But as soon as any problem exists, the music should stop and alarms should start to sound à negative affect (but don't overdo it, we don't want them to fail to see otherwise obvious alternatives).
Because of the extreme focues and tunnel vision induced by high anxiety, the situation has to be designed to minimize the need for creative thoughts. That's why professionals are trained over and over again in accident scenarios, thrhought training exercises and simulators, so that if a real incident occurs, they will have experienced it so many times in training that their responses follow automatically.
When under high anxiety, people focus upon escape.

The prepared brain
Working with the three levels of perception is necessary to maintain a steady line in a design process. You have to bare in mind that each level interacts with another level and that you will have to keep these levels on the same level.
There are three levels that can be mapped to product characteristics like this:


Visceral design -> appearance

Behavioral design -> The pleasure and effectiveness of use
Reflective design -> self image, personal satisfaction, memories



No single product can be designed to fit the needs of everyone. Dispite the fact that there is some sort of universal man ( two arms, two legs etc. ) there still are individual differences, energetic, lazy, cultural differences etc. Everyday products the same product is redesigned to fit the needs of an other group of people. This does not mean there is no product that will fit everyone’s need, but this is a special case in which there is no alternative such as Coca Cola.
Not only the “target group” for which the product is designed is from importance, also the environment it is used can play a big part in a succeeding product. Needs can be determined by the task: a pail is needed to carry water, some sort of case is needed to transport paper to work and back to your home. These needs are determined by advertisement, culture, the way one views himself and ones self image.
Although a students backpack or paper bag would work perfectly fine to carry papers, it might be embarrassing to carry one into a serious power business meeting. Embarrassment is an emotion that reflects one`s sense of the appropriateness of behavior and is really all in the mind. Product designers an marketing executives know this and use this.


J.R.R. Tolkien:
- British philologist
- invented the mythical language 'Elvish', for his trilogy 'The Lord of the Rings'
- The words 'tinko' and 'losse' (metal and snow)
- There is a relationship between the sounds of an language and the meaning of the words. In that way, people can most of the time guess what a word means in their own language, even without ever experiencing the language.

The designer wants to know how to design something that will appeal to everyone: one person's acceptance is another one's rejection. The source of this complexity can be found in the three levels of processing; at visceral level people are pretty much the same all over the world. The behavioral and reflective levels however, are very sensitive to experiences, training and education.
So what is the designer to do? That is the theme of the rest of the book.