Why Beautiful Things Work Better Revisited

By Deane Barker on October 10, 2005

Why Beautiful Things Work Better: I posted this two years ago today. It’s worth re-reading once a month.

[…] the role of aesthetics in product design: 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.

Now, go hug your graphic artist.

What This Links To


  1. I can still hear one of my marketing prof’s saying, “Good design costs no more than bad design.” He was talking about package design, but when you look at some of the real costs of bad design in other areas of life, (“… attractive things make people feel good, which in turn makes them think more creatively…”) good design is probably the better deal every time.

  2. Not to beat a dead horse, but the beauty of the user interface is one of the things that make people like Macs and feel like they’re more productive on them. And they probably are, for the reasons explained in the post we’re talking about.

  3. There’s a related post on Gizmodo today:

    … Can we make our tools more fun by making them more like playthings? And what can we learn from our toys that will make our work more engaging, productive and satisfying?
    1. Serendipity Rules
    At work, we think we know exactly what we’re looking for. When we play, we often seek out things we don’t know about.

    People are always accusing Macs, especially iMacs, of being toys; maybe there is something to that.

  4. Deane

    I think you are leaving some of us value folk out of the equation. When I was in the market for a flash based player, the shuffle was one of the ones that I looked at. Yes it won in the “gee wiz” column but it lost in every other, including my most valuable metric, value. Simply put I bought the Sandisk player because I got more features for less money. And while some go on and on about how nice apple products look, which I do not deny, once you hit play and stick it in your pocket, the only thing that matters is Memory size, SNR and THD. ;-)

    Tp prove my point it was annouced that Sandisk is going to release a 4gig player for $199. That’s $50 less then apple’s 4 gig and the same price of apple’s 2 gig. For me, and I know I’m in the minority but, spending less and getting more is a no brainer. Sorry.

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