Don Norman

Prof. and Director, the Design Lab
University of California San Diego, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92093, USA

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  • 15 Blog Posts
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  • "Nice observations about Core77's assumption of which direction means what. One example I should have given was "move the time up a bit." If the meeting was schedule for 4 PM, does that mean to move it to 3 or to 5? Or, if today Thursday and I say to meet "next Friday" do I mean tomorrow or a week from tomorrow? (My wife and I completely disagree about this.) Don"
    on: What Moves? Culture & Interaction Design
  • "You know, you gotta look at the context. Look, if I want a techy review I will read a car magazine (or website). If I want a techy camera review, I will read a camera magazine (or go to a camera website). But from the New York Times or the everyday newspaper, I expect something for the everyday reader, much as they do in their reviews of consumer electronics. They should write for their readers. What we need are reviewers such as Walt Mossberg (Wall St. Journal) and David Pogue (New York Times), but writing about cars with the same intelligence and concern for the real person that they bring to consumer electronics. I happen to be a car nut. I like to read technical reviews. But when I buy a car for my family, i want to know if it fits the lifestyle of my family. And I want a second opinion: consumer reports is good,but it has its own biases. OK? Don Norman"
    on: Automobile Reviewers: Stuck in the Past
  • "OK, you convinced me. I've ordered the book."
    on: Book Review: Thoughts on Interaction Design, by Jon Kolko
  • "Thank you Bill for your informed comment. I agree and I disagree. You provided a rich description of the thinking process used in the design process. I have no disagreements with the description, nor for the very lovely excerpt from your very lovely book. My argument, however, is that the important components of this process are not restricted to designers, a point you must agree with, for you stated "People of any background can use it, whether or not they think of themselves as designers." That's my point: it is a powerful method for generating creative ideas, one that has long been used in a wider variety of areas: art, literature, dance, music, engineering, the sciences, and of course, design. The details vary a bit with the discipline, but the essence is the same. So why call it design thinking? Why not simply creative thinking? Why? Because it is useful for the design community to demonstrate that good design is more than styling. Now, while I am at it, let me put on my hat as a psychologist and take mild disagreement with one of your other statements, namely that one thing special about this mode of thought is that it uses both the conscious and subconscious mind. No, that is wrong. Most of our thinking is subconscious, and this applies for everyone, even when it is a logic-following, problem driven, intensely focused engineer. No, using the subconscious is not a special feature of what is being called design thinking. Perhaps you are thinking of the traditional (but very oversimplified) discussion of the difference between left- and right-brained thinking. Or as I prefer to think of it, as the difference between analytical, focused, logical thought and holistic, emotional thought. Design thinking requires the right brain, the part that is holistic, emotional, inspired. (But it also requires the left-brain to evaluate and refine those right-brain ideas. As Dan Pink put it in his book "A whole new mind," we need the whole mind, left and right. Thanks for the detailed exposition of thinking. It is only through discussion like this that we can move design forward. I sometimes think that design does not examine itself critically enough: critical examination is how fields flourish and advance. Thanks for contributing. (And when you finish with the Smithsonian, come back to California: we miss you.)"
    on: Design Thinking: Dear Don . . .
  • "Nice article. In the United States alone, there are roughly 10 million crashes and 33,000 deaths each year from automobiles. I look forward to the day when we have automated cars. (The hard part will be getting the system going, when there is a mix of automated and non-automated cars, and then when the system is going, with some cars having technology 10-15 years newer than others.) What about people who like to drive? It will be like people who like to ride horses. There will be special places to go, to rent cars and tracks or driving courses. Don Norman"
    on: Two (Non-Exclusive) Possibilities for the Future of Transportation: A Brief Essay
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