(Sep 2009) Emotions and Design, a Mobile UI Designer's Perspective (Updated)


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Presented at a Human-Computer Interaction Graduate Course of DePaul University, Chicago. Added framework from Don Norman and Ravi Chutturi, along with design research methods I learned from IIT Institute of Design.

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  • I am a senior mobile interaction design in Chicago. I’m heavily involved in designing the next generation of user interfaces for mobile social media on Android.Want to talk about a topic that has caught my attention during the past 10-12 months during my professional work and course work at Institute of Design in Chicago.Share opinion on why relevance of emotions in designing CONSUMER mobile interfaces and experience, what is it and how to go about putting that into your practice.I’m in the early state of my exploration so I also want to start and maintain a dialog with this group.
  • Although these examples are not mobile or UX solutions that we are all familiar with, they are examples of companies that successfully sell high quality but commoditized products in highly saturated markets.They would not have been so successful and iconic had they not established an emotional connection with their customers.If they could survive, the would be generic brands that compete on distribution (selling it ever where) and price (cut throat low price)You may think that I’m talking about marketing, but it is a lot deeper and a lot more. People don’t just buy cars, they also want to self express. People don’t wear jeans, they have plan other things to wear, they want to look good in them.
  • Interactions designs, esp mobile applications and services, are becoming saturated and highly competitive because of opening of software platformsThere is no clear winner yet.
  • Anyone can make anything -> Lots of choices. It takes just weeks to put up an application on the Apple App Store. Despite that, the Apple app store opened on July 10 2009. In 1.5 years, 50000+ applications became available. It takes hours for the Android Market Place.This is 20000 of them show cased as icons during Apple’s Developers’ Conference in June 2009.Cite: http://www.appleinsider.com/articles/09/06/09/apple_stuns_wwdc_crowd_with_pulsating_app_store_hyperwall.htmlWith all these choices, people search for Meaning. “Why I need to keep buying and upgrading?” “And also, why are YOU still around and why do YOU keep making this stuff?” Consumershave short loyalty span.
  • User Interface Designer -> User Interaction Designer -> User Experience DesignerWikipedia:Experience design (XD) is the practice of designing products, processes, services, events, and environments with a focus placed on the quality of the user experience and culturally relevant solutions, with less emphasis placed on increasing and improving functionality of the design.From the PoV of an interaction designer… User interactions during an experience is the made up of the the user’s responses to the stimuli the designers plant during the journey of use. A successful experience design, at the very least, requires user’s un-divided attention, even for a short burst of time.But in Mobile UI Design, Undivided Attention is Extremely Difficult to Get.Statistics.. Show the number of interruptions users face during operations of a mobile phone.
  • To get consumers to adopt your kick ass application (and inevitably ask them to abandon their old application), you cannot just tell you what your product it is.Most consumers are only good at what is working (or not) in front of them. To help them switch over, you have to help them imagine your application in their lives in the future. Emotional connection (if done right), does a much better job in that task than explaining the features (even tho that’s still a crucial idea).
  • Emotive design that connect with user’s values promotes loyalty. Because they are just not usable, they ‘speak to’ the users.
  • Two things to search for and you should work hard to nail down early in your design process. (Tell me if you know others!)
  • Unless you are the first solution in the field (unlikely), you’re asking user to trade-off your solution with competitors or the 1 they have at home.Find what user cares  satisfy basic functionalities (i.e. make sure your solution works and work well)  Bring Additional ‘Delight’‘Delight’s’ must be relevant to user’s motivations and align with their values.Look not only the problem that user’s want to solve, but also how they feel about things around the problem.
  • Zagat has dominated on content in the past, in the mobile app, it’s all about easily accessing their (proprietary) contents.
  • - Urban spoon- Aggregates view from free online new papers and restaurant review sites (tearing down advantage of editorial reviews from Zagat)- Adds fun and randomness to alleviate pain point of looking for a place to eat.Align your design goals with those often unspoken values.You cannot lab-test values. You have to go ask.
  • What is your design ‘in character’? Context sets a base for expectations, it allows user to ‘hang their hat’ on a theme and thereby gives designers windows in the to delight customers with the unexpected. A door knob is usable, can be completely boring and distracting in a user’s experience journey. An un-usable but contextually fitting door knob is often better.
  • Basic,predictable, usable design to address Behavioral goals of users.
  • With traditional, usable sound editing UI in place to address the Behavioral quality, Logic Studio extends to address the Visceral (being cool looking) and Reflective (gaining mastery) qualities of their product.
  • e.g. Logic Plus from Apple - Tabs into the user’s need of being a rock star and producer. - Controls and synthesizers from different music genre evoke emotional responses that are in context and aligns with user’s values - Bring the goal of mastery into the user experience. - Question: if the design team solely focuses on usability, would they have arrived with these designs? - Unlikely, because these UI require user to learn the same actions again and again. From purely usability stand-point, consistency is King.
  • What about the context of a user who is trying to write a letter?Is having a dialog with an animated character a match to the context? (Or, the basic functionality of matching user of the right template or tools a better option?)
  • Visceral – BeautifulBehavioral – UsableReflective – Meaningful
  • * Users get vocal about their experiences. Delight & excitement motivates word of mouth Anger & disappointment leads to resentment toward manufacturer.
  • No ad campaign, graphics design or feature set can save your product if you it is not usable and reliable. BUT, if you’re in a highly saturated market where usability paradigm are established (think iPhone platform), feature are more or less meeting user’s needs (think cars), it is time to look at the 2 other qualities of your product and make the right trade-off (think Microsoft Office vs Google Doc, and the new Microsoft Office Web Apps in 2010). Spending your resource to tweak navigation and control placement is will give you diminishing returns. Fewer features also help you keep user’s engaged on your experience.
  • probably too involved for HCI students, but scale and do rough draft of similar thinkingat the beginning of your project.
  • Question: What do user’s care about? Method: Mental Mapping
  • Question: What bugs user the most (and therefore can be a meaningful improvement)? Method: Ride-along
  • Question: What is the use environment? Method: Field survey. Don’t sit in your cubes and create solutions, solutions are not used inside your cubes.
  • Question: How to communicate why I made my choices? Method: Journey Map… this is just 1 of the common methods
  • 15 General Universal Meanings that People Seek:AccomplishmentBeautyCreationCommunityDutyEnlightenmentFreedomHarmonyJusticeOnenessRedemptionSecurityTruthValidationWonder
  • Parting thought on that note..“If I ask you about your favorite book, you will tell me about what you remember about the characters, and story line. If the book REALLY connects with you, you’ll tell me about stories about the time when you bought and read the book. I’m CERTAIN that you’ll not tell me about how good is the grammar and accuracy of the spelling. Great designs should connect with people in the same manner. If should be create emotions and become memorable. In the world anyone can make anything and make it available any where. Our designs need to go beyond ‘it works’.”
  • (Sep 2009) Emotions and Design, a Mobile UI Designer's Perspective (Updated)

    1. 1. Emotions in UX Design… a mobile UI designer’s perspective<br />DePaul HCI. Sep 2009<br />
    2. 2. Can you imagine…<br />
    3. 3. BMW only sells you cars?<br />
    4. 4.
    5. 5. Coke just talks about their fizzy citrus drinks?<br />
    6. 6.
    7. 7. What if Diesel just promotes comfort & styles of their jeans? <br />
    8. 8. All these products have several things in common.<br />
    9. 9. Why get so emotional?Why now?<br />
    10. 10.
    11. 11. Interaction design a profession is also changing<br />
    12. 12. Customer loyalty has become very finicky <br />
    13. 13. emotive Design<br />
    14. 14. Ok then, how would one approach emotive design?<br />
    15. 15. User’s alues<br />
    16. 16.
    17. 17.
    18. 18. Context<br />
    19. 19.
    20. 20.
    21. 21.
    22. 22.
    23. 23. Frameworks<br />
    24. 24. Don Norman’s Framework<br />on Relationship between Information Processing and Design Goals<br />Reflective<br />Sensory<br />Input<br />Motor<br />Output<br />Behavioral<br />Visceral<br />Level of Information Processing<br />
    25. 25. Ravi Chitturi’sFramework<br />on user’s trade-offs between Hedonistic and Utilitarian Benefits<br />Expectations Met<br />Expectations Met<br />Delight, Excitement*<br />Guilt, Anxiety<br />Expectations Un-met<br />Expectations Un-met<br />Confidence, Security<br />Anger, Disappointment*<br />Utilitarian Benefits: Functional & usable, keeps me out of trouble<br />Hedonic Benefits : Good looking, pleasant, helps me promote myself<br />
    26. 26. Insights from the Two Frameworks<br />Like reliability, usability is important and expected.<br />Pushing beyond usability bring in sensorial qualities (e.g. aesthetics & playfulness)<br />Focus on meaningful of features that matching user value and aspirations.<br />
    27. 27.
    28. 28. Identifying User Value & Context of Problem<br /><ul><li>Approach with Empathy.
    29. 29. Don’t just ask. Watch.
    30. 30. Never, ever, outsource understanding.</li></li></ul><li>Tools & Methods<br />
    31. 31.
    32. 32.
    33. 33.
    34. 34.
    35. 35. People & Resources<br />Emotional Design – Don Norman<br />Making Meaning – Steve Diller, Nathan Shedroff, and Darrel Rhea<br />Design & Emotions Society<br />http://www.designandemotion.org/<br />Design & Emotions Conference 2010, Chicago<br />Ravi Chitturi<br />Department of Marketing, Lehigh University<br />Pieter Desmet: studiolab.io.tudelft.nl/desmet/<br />Dave Armano: http://darmano.typepad.com/logic_emotion/ <br />
    36. 36. About<br />Alfred Lui is a Sr. User Interaction Designer in Chicago, specialized in Social Media.<br />Alfred worked in Japan, Canada and United States. He currently lives in Chicago, but dreams about retiring in Paris.<br />w: www.connection76.com<br />t: @connection76<br />e: alui@connection76.com<br />