Video Summary: 3 ways good design makes you happy | Don Norman | TED2003


    Video Summary: 3 ways good design makes you happy | Don Norman | TED2003

  • 1 Don said the 'new him' is all about beauty

    Don started by saying how the 'new him' is all about beauty. In contrast, the old Don would make things usable but ugly. His new life is trying to understand what pretty and emotions are.

  • 2 Don said he has a theory of emotion

    Don said he that has a theory of emotion that has 3 components: beauty, functionality and reflection.

  • 3 Don told a story about a funny ping-pong table

    Don talked about a ping-pong table made at the MIT Media Lab with water ripples and fish that moved around on every ball strike. He concluded it wasn't a proper way of playing the game but a fun one.

  • 4 Don talked about Google's result page

    Don mentioned how Google extends their logo to adjust to the number of search result pages. A 10 page search result would make the logo have 10 'o' letters. He said that it's simple, subtle and the subconscious notices it and likes it.

  • 5 Don talked about the MINI Cooper

    Don talked about how the MINI Cooper has lots of faults but is a very fun car to drive; the controls are great and the inside has a fun, round and neat design. He then said that his new life is about fun.

  • 6 Don talked about how pleasant things work better

    Don talked about how he realized that pleasant things work better. He mentioned an example of walking on a plank that's on the ground and one that's suspended 300 feet in the air. Don concluded that fear paralyzes the person and makes the brain work differently.

  • 7 Don talked about how anxiety makes us focus

    Don talked about how anxiety and fear are helpful as they make us focus and hardly get distracted. (See Body language signs of anxiety)

  • 8 Don talked about how happiness affects the brain

    Don mentioned a study that was done with students. In the study, happier students easily solved the problem. He talked about how anxiety makes us release neural transmitters in the brain, which makes us focus. Happiness releases dopamine which makes us think outside of the box.

  • 9 Don talked about a visceral level of processing

    Don talked about how we have a visceral level of processing, which means lots of things are built in our brain - colors, things we dislike and like and so on. He said all of those can be incorporated into a visceral-level design where certain fonts, shapes and colors invoke emotions.

  • 10 Don talked about how the subconsciousness controls almost everything

    Don talked about how our behavior, walking, his rehearsed talk, comes from the subconsciousness. He said it's the behavioral side and how it's all about feeling in control which includes usability, understanding -- but also the feel and heft. (Se What does the subconscious mind do )

  • 11 Don said it's all about the feeling of being in control

    Don talked about how a sharp, balanced knife makes us feel we're in control of cutting, and how a sports car going over a demanding curb makes us feel like we're in control of the environment and the sensual feeling that goes along with it. 

  • 12 Don talked about emotion and cognition

    Don said that emotion is all about acting in the world, while cognition is all about understanding it and giving it meaning.

  • 13 Don talked about reflection and image

    Don talked about how some products, such as the car Hummer, are all about reflection and the driver's image. They grab attention and impress people, which makes them attractive.

  • 14 Don finished by talking about pitting emotions together

    Don talked about how we pit emotions against one another to see if we'll go with it. For example, the amusement park ride offers both excitement and fear of falling down at the same time. He said that if the ride was rusty and falling apart we would never go on it. (See why do we have emotions)