*** User Friendly by Cliff Kuang and Robert Fabricant

User Friendly: How the Hidden Rules of Design Are Changing the Way We Live, Work, and Play is a masterful history of user-focused design. Peppered with examples from domains as varied as the design of nuclear power plants, autonomous cars, assistive devices for the elderly, jet fighters, hybrid car energy usage displays, icons, or the bracelets used in Disney amusement parks, it tells the story of how designers embraced the need to design for the user, rather than trying to get the user to learn how to use whatever tools they were designing. Along the way, we see how familiar concepts such as navigability, consistency, shape coding, and personas came into being. It’s a great read, and not only for designers, but for us laypeople as well.

 

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