All posts filed under “Hidden persuaders

Cialdini on the Beach

Cialdini on the Beach

Self-monitoring is one of the most common persuasive techniques used in interface design: basically, giving people feedback on what they’re doing and what they’ve done. There are lots of issues about which kinds of feedback work best, in what circumstances, pairing it with feedforward, i.e. […]

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The detail of everyday interaction

The detail of everyday interaction

Understanding what people really do when they carry out some ‘simple’ task, as opposed to what designers assume they do, is important. Even something as mundane as boiling a kettle to make a cup of tea or coffee is fraught with variability, slips, mistaken assumptions […]

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Salt licked?

Salt licked?

UPDATE: See the detailed response below from Peter of Gateshead Council, which clarifies, corrects and expands upon some of the spin given by the Mail articles. The new shakers were supplied to the chip shop staff for use behind the counter: “Our main concern was […]

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Richard Thaler at the RSA

Richard Thaler at the RSA

Richard Thaler, co-author of Nudge (which is extremely relevant to the Design with Intent research), gave a talk at the RSA in London today, and, though only mentioned briefly, he clearly drew the links between design and behaviour change. Some notes/quotes I scribbled down:

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So long, and thanks for all the rubbish

So long, and thanks for all the rubbish

It cost nothing to put this (trilingual) thank-you message on this litter bin at Helsinki Airport. But does this kind of message – a very simple injunctive norm – have more effect on user behaviour than the absence of a message? To what extent does […]

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Motel 6cc

Motel 6cc

The plastic* of this built-in Dove shower cream bottle I encountered in a Finnish hotel recently was significantly stiffer than the consumer retail version. The idea is that you press the side of the bottle where indicated to dispense some cream, but it didn’t deform […]

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Designing Safe Living

Designing Safe Living

Lancaster University’s interdisciplinary Institute for Advanced Studies (no, not that one) has been running a research programme, New Sciences of Protection, culminating in a conference, Designing Safe Living, on 10-12 July, “investigat[ing] ‘protection’ at the intersections of security, sciences, technologies, markets and design.” The keynote […]

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The Seven Habits of Highly Affective Products

The Seven Habits of Highly Affective Products

A few people, products and experiences have impressed on me the importance of affect, of evoking an emotional response, in persuasion and behaviour change (I’ll admit I haven’t yet addressed how best to incorporate this into the DwI Method). There’s a lot of interesting work […]

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Exploiting the desire for order

Exploiting the desire for order

I met a lot of remarkable people in Finland, and some of them – they know who they are – have given me a lot to think about, in a good way, about lots of aspects of life, psychology and its relation to design. Thanks […]

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Lights reminding you to turn things off

Lights reminding you to turn things off

Duncan Drennan, who writes the very thoughtful Art of Engineering blog, notes something extremely interesting: standby lights, if they’re annoying/visible enough, can actually motivate users to switch the device off properly: Our DVD player has (to me) the most irritating standby light that I have […]

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Nudges and the power of choice architecture

Nudges and the power of choice architecture

An ‘advance uncorrected page proof’ of Nudge I managed to get off Abebooks. Thanks to Hien Nguyen for the photo. Nudge, by Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein, is a publishing sensation of the moment, no doubt helped by Thaler’s work advising Barack Obama (many thanks […]

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Design with Intent presentation from Persuasive 2008

Design with Intent presentation from Persuasive 2008

Dan Lockton: Design With Intent (Persuasive 2008) view presentation (tags: environment affordances sustainability lockton) EDIT: I’ve now added the audio! Thanks everyone for the suggestions on how best to do it; the audio is hosted on this site rather than the Internet Archive as the […]

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Best bitter

Best bitter

Bitrex, the world’s most bitter substance, is what’s known as a taste aversive – added to products which might seem tasty to humans (especially children) to persuade them not to drink them, or to spit out what they’ve already drunk. It’s a similar idea to […]

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Home-made instant poka-yokes

Home-made instant poka-yokes

Update: Also known as Useful Landmines in the 43 Folders world – thanks Pantufla! Mistake-proofing – poka-yoke – can be as simple as encouraging/forcing yourself to do things in a sequence, to avoid forgetting or avoiding intermediate steps. If you’re the sort of person who […]

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Chute the messenger

Chute the messenger

This is a communal rubbish chute serving a block of flats. The cross-sectional area of the aperture revealed by opening the hatch should be smaller than the cross-sectional area of the chute itself, so there’s less chance of rubbish bags getting stuck, even when someone […]

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A lengthy debate

A lengthy debate

Norwich City Council is introducing a system of parking permit charges determined by the length of the vehicle: The move away from flat-fee permits will penalise drivers who own vehicles more than 4.45 metres (14½ft) in length, such as the Vauxhall Vectra. Brian Morrey, vice-chairman […]

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