Affordance and Visual Feedback Cues
What is affordance? (Gibson 1977)
What we do with our bodies, how we connect with the world
We live in a world that has objects and other people in it.
We negotiate our way around it.
We learn to communicate with people and not bump into people.
Every day we position our body.
‘Excuse me, sorry, can I pass?’
We perceive things visually
We encounter a possibility for action
When you encounter a door, you use the handle.
The way we move our bodies is related to the design of the environment we live in.
Stairs do not have signs, when using stairs you don’t know what floor you’re on
Glass Partition; has been designed in a way that you can see it but you can’t see it.
Looking at the ceiling, it is helpful to have a higher ceiling.
People used to be shorter, ceilings were lower.
The possibility for action between a person and an object
How do you know how to use a handle?
It’s near your hand
The way that the object conveys information to us
You learn to pull a handle.
In B Block some doors are push doors but have a handle.
How you know how to use things is a certain way is called ‘perceived affordance’
‘There’s a nack to it’. When there is a nack to it that is bad design.
How are things designed so that it is obvious how to use them?
‘Fire Door Keep Shut’
We have to override signs in order to get around.
-Sometimes signs are not logical – we override them with our embodied knowledge.
We all ignore fire door signs all the time.
Propping doors open – Fire hazard
What are the consequences of ignoring the sign?
Norman (1999) – things should be designed in a way that makes it obvious how to use
People’s actions need to be taken into account
Visual feedback cues
How do you know how to open a kid’s cup?
Hinges/grips/lip/dip/ridges – visual feedback cues to push/pull/unscrew
Think about the way things are designed, and how this changes how you use your body
Cursor on a screen – means we can write
Visual cues, it is how we make our way in the world
How you switch things on, taps, soap dispenser
How we use a computer
Seeing the curser flashing – perceived affordance. Actually writing – affordance
Buttons give you visual cues, perceived affordance
We commonly understand how to do things, how is this?
How do we commonly understand swipe screen technology?
Person born in 1930 compared with person born in 2013
Computers in 80s and 90s
The only information on the computer is what you put on it. Now with cloud systems/internet the computer has unlimited information on it.
Person born in 1930s
Struggles to use an iPad.
Touching a screen in difficult as you weren’t supposed to touch screens before
Touch screen technology doesn’t take into account people who are used to buttons
The visual cues of touchscreen appliances are not enough for someone who have not been brought up with it
Born in 2013
Already have touch screen knowledge
Pick up things that are phone shaped
Already swiping, never used a PC
Touch screen is an example of thinking about visual cues and perceived affordance
Touch screen technology requires direct action, and is embodied knowledge
Could be argued that it is a cultural convention that older people find touch screens difficult to use
Affordance. It allows you to do something.
How do you design something in a way that people will commonly understand how to use it?
Ring pulls – visual cue
Affordance is about the way in which we interact with things. Visual cues is how we understand how we interact with them (perceived affordances).
Norman got fed up with badly designed objects and environments.
He applied the concept of psychology in design in the 70s/80s – this revolutionised design.
Look at how things are designed and how they might be used.
Give people a prototype and see if they know how it works
Don’t assume that other people know how to use things just because you do.
-Think about what you already know and write it up on your blog – are there any gaps?
-Think about the concept of perceived affordance and visual cues
-Can you think of an example of something that is beautifully designed?
We learn from childhood, but we also learn from the visual cues we are given. How we interpret visual cues, our embodied knowledge.
Applying Theory to Your Essay
You need to use the theories discussed in the study group in your essay
Might be related to your subject area but doesn’t have to
Something to do with the body + a theory/a few theories we have talked about
Consider what you have been learning
Make a list of theories from the study groups so far
Go to the index of the book, find your subject of interest or a person/theorist you are interested in, go to the pages and read them. You don’t need to read the whole book.
Use Summon, not Google