Chapter 2: Designing for Humans

Oddly enough, the thing I did not quite agree with in this chapter came first thing, following the Darwin quote. The author asserts that humans “don’t develop emotions after birth by watching others” and, in fact, they are “born ready to express [emotions].” To me, this idea is stated a little to concrete given the concept of nature vs. nurture. It is not a vital component to the piece by any means, but it did raise my eyebrows a little bit. However, in a way it set me up for similar issues in the coming sections of the chapter. I felt that, overall, the author made some great points involving the baby-face bias. Explaining the use of “cute” website mascots in this way made complete sense. The supporting point about scientists believing we evolved to love baby faces so that we would not kill them, on the other hand, made the author’s credibility waver a bit. As I said, that is my own, very particular, opinion. That being said, I greatly appreciated the idea of perception explained throughout this chapter. The idea of using shape and typography figuratively instead of literally in terms of perception is a huge component of web design. In fact, I never really noticed it “out loud,” but this idea resonated in my mind because I was recognizing this concept subliminally in every web page I visit.  This realization is why Chapter 2 was so interesting to me – I got to literally learn all the subliminal aspects I had yet to fully process. Contrast, for instance, is something I do not always think about, but upon reading this chapter I noticed all the effort that goes in to a simple log-in (especially in terms of overall aesthetic).


Originally posted at CK1