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100 Things Every Designer Needs to Know About People

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This chapter is from the book

The Psychology of Design

Whether you’re designing a website, an app, software, or a medical device, the more you know about people, the better experience you will be able to design for your audience.

Your audience’s experience is profoundly impacted by what you know—or don’t know—about them.

How do they think? How do they decide? What motivates them to click or purchase or whatever it is you want them to do?

You’ll learn these things in this book.

You’ll also learn what grabs attention, what errors people make and why, and other things that will help you design.

And you’ll design better because I’ve already done most of the heavy lifting for you. I’m one of those strange people who like to read research. Lots and lots of research. So I read—or in some cases, re-read—dozens of books and hundreds of research articles. I picked my favorite theories, concepts, and research studies and combined them with the experience I’ve gained throughout the many years I’ve been designing technology interfaces.

And you’re holding the result: 100 things I think you need to know about people.

Note about the second edition: When I wrote the first edition of this book, I hoped, of course, that it would be a popular, widely read book. But I didn’t know if people would respond to it or not. It’s been a surprise and a heart warming experience to have the reaction to the book be so positive. The first edition has been translated into several languages and used as a textbook in many universities, and people often show me their well-used book with marks and sticky notes and highlights.

It’s been several years since I wrote the first edition, and most of the material has stood the test of time. There is some new research, however, so I decided it was time to do a second edition. I’ve done updates, and tweaked explanations, wordings, and images, to make sure the book stays current.

A big thank-you to all my readers for your support.

Susan Weinschenk, Ph.D.

Edgar, WI

June 2020

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