Designing for Experience
I recently read the book “Experience Design: Technology for All the Right Reasons” by Marc Hassenzahl which introduced me to a new paradigm in the field of design — Experience Design. I am excited to share some of my understandings in this blog post.
Things that we interact with in our day-to-day life provide different experiences depending on our perception, action, motivation, cognition in correspondence with the world (place, time, people, object). The study of Human-Computer Interaction helps us think about the ways in which we can make technology more interactive and usable but it does not help us understand the ways in which we can improve the experience provided by the technology. In short, HCI does not guide the thinking of experiences and the ways in which experience could be augmented with the help of technology.
Experience is the feeling and emotion that emerges from the integration of different elements like perception, action, motivation, cognition in correspondence with the world(place, time, people, object). Experience can be described in a space and time context but is not necessarily reducible to only that. It is more complex. Experience also depends on the order in which events taking place and the time it takes place in, in coordination with an individual’s self-reflection that depends on their perception, action, motivation, and cognition. Experience is not bound by the medium through which it can be delivered — the medium can be technology or a material object. Experience design when applied to HCI while designing a technology augments the impact technology has on an individual’s psychological being.
There are 3 reasons for why we should consider designing for experience(Hassenzahl, M. 2010c)— experiences are self-defining, experiences make us happier and experience motivates. According to my knowledge, HCI is the field that is driven by human needs and motivations. I believe, we design products to provide better user experiences with the motive of making good product sales. Designing for Experience gives a designer the opportunity to think about why a user would be motivated to use their product and force designers to think about the satisfaction level their product provides to users. This would ultimately help us fill the gaps between the human needs and product goals which will help provide a holistic experience to the users. In this way, users will be motivated to continue using the product as they will have a happy and personal experience.
- Hassenzahl, M. (2010c). Experience Design: Technology for All the Right Reasons. San Rafael, CA: Morgan & Claypool, pp. 33–40.