|Megan Fox vs reptile brain|
What was the first thing you looked at when you saw this web page? I doubt it was the title of the blog, I bet it wasn’t even the picture of that handsome chap on the right side showing an audience how big the fish he caught was. Admit it, you looked at the sexy picture of Megan Fox before anything else, even though you might normally (assuming you are from a left to right reading culture) start scanning the page on the top left your vision probably anchored to Ms Fox and you scanned down from there. You might have only followed the link to this blog in the first place because the picture made you curious, or probably its the only reason you noticed the link in the first place.
|Good guy Peter|
I mentioned this briefly in a previous post:
- Rather than spend your valuable spare time learning the latest prototyping tool, consider investing time in learning cognitive psychology, neuroscience and anthropology. There will always be a new prototyping tool, but humans won't change that much.
It is exciting to start exploring psychology as a UX designer, these behaviors we have been observing our users doing while using our products start to get an explanation. Additionally your persuasion powers get a boost as you can point to scientific papers in additional to the rest of the tools in your design ninja tool belt.
How to get started
Many other approaches are possible, but this is how I got a start:
Watch Yale’s Introduction to Psychology course on Open Yale Courses. Also available on iTunes university and the whole course can be downloaded from the link.
|Professor Paul Bloom being amusing and informative|
100 Things Every Designer Needs to Know about People by Susan Weinschenk
Neuro Web Design: What makes them click? by Susan Weinschenk
Imagine - How creativity works by Jonah Lehrer
Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H Pink
Seductive Interaction Design: Creating Playful, Fun, and Effective User Experiences by Stephen P. Anderson
If you read nothing else
Start with Susan Weinschenk’s 100 Things Every Designer Needs to Know about People. It is as much of a bible for design ninjas as Steve Krug’s Don’t make me think which I have given out to stakeholders, PM and eng partners over the years as a UX primer. A couple of years ago it was updated and worth another look if it has been a while for you.
|Not cool, Steve Krug|
No martial arts metaphors?
I spent the whole blog post without using a single martial arts metaphor. Well humans are complex and unpredictable, and just as getting drawn to Ms Fox is likely, there are two other layers in the brain wrapping that oldest part which could also influence your reaction.
As in combat we need to enter without expectation in order for our movements to be fast and fluid. The unpredictability of combat means that if we at any point have the intention of using a specific technique then we get in our own way and are caught out when the unexpected happens.