Monday, November 23, 2009

last post

1.The most rewarding exercises was the egg drop because the egg survived the fall. Most of the readings were interesting, especially the readings about behavioral design, and about package design. The assignment that I found most challenging was the analysis of a retail store because I was not sure what to put in the powerpoint, and what to put in the spoken part of the presentation. Also I ended up walking several miles to get to the store (unfortunately farther than I thought it was) so I could not return to the store to take pictures or looks at aspects of the store over again.

2. In seminar this year I learned that products are designed based on combinations of visceral, behavioral and reflective design. Another thing that I learned is that when a product does not work the way I want or is complicated, that it is not necessarily me doing something wrong, that sometimes there is a problem with the way a product is designed.

3. In the future when buying products I will pay attention more to how products are designed. Just because a product is more expensive or looks complicated. does not necessarily make it designed better--most times the better design is simpler than other designs.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Behavioral Architecture

1. An example of architectural design that I consider an epic failure is the Tacoma Narrows Bridge in St.Paul/Minneapolis that collapsed last year due to wind and traffic.
Another (although not epic) failure is the kitchen at my house before it was remodeled. In the kitchen one could not open the oven and the refrigerator at the same time. Also the usable counter space was not in a convenient place for cooking.

2. Hick's Center is a building on Kalamazoo Campus that is very well designed. The style of the building matches(the type of brick and the general structure of the building) that of the other buildings on the campus. The glass section also gives it a modern look. Hicks is also an environmentally friendly building. It has many windows so that less electricity is used. Also the restrooms are low-water use. The entrance to Hicks is also viscerally attractive, with the multiple layers of floors all visible.

3. The current flaw in the current design process is that there is not enough communication between the users and the architects. This could be fixed by having the architects and the users meet before any building has begun and go over the plans. They could use computer programs in order to make it easier for the user to better understand what the architect is describing. They could also meet after the building is finished so that the user could evaluate how he or she likes different features of the building so that the architect could use this feedback to improve buildings that he or she designs in the future.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Ads, Fads & Consumer Culture

1."We each like to think we can resist advertising and it has no impact on us. This notion, which I will discuss in more detail in chapter 3, makes light of the power of advertising and helps us preserve our sense of autonomy and individuality. Others are brain-washed by ads, but no us, we think--as we find ourselves purchasing products we feel, somehow, we must have"
I think that this is interesting because I have heard people say exactly what Berger said. Even though an advertisement is not specifically targeted for us, it can still make us more likely to buy the product, just because we are then more familiar with the product.

2. Key points:
-Advertising works, but not always effectively or in ways that the advertising is expected to work
-Advertisers uses the psychological tendencies of humans to get responses from them(Pavlov's dog experiment)
-The media has a large influence on the cultural behavioral of people
-Advertisements are everywhere and they give people knowledge about many of the products that are on the market.

3. A psychological understanding is important with advertising because advertisers want the products their advertisements to be effective and the best way to do this is by knowing how people will perceive them and react to them. Then advertisements are made to get people to remember them and want to buy the products that they promote.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Fashion Design

1.The clothes people wear projects the image that they want to portray to others. The clothes you wears is one of the first things that someone new notices about you. reason fashion design is so reflective.

2.Fashion changes and evolves, instead of remaining static, because people are always trying to have the clothes that they wear fit their definition of cool and designers are always presenting them with new ideas of clothes to wear. People see new designs, through celebrities and commercials, and want to get them in order to have the popular styles and those styles then do become popular once enough people have bought them.

3.-Type of fabric(comfortable, durable)
-price of product reflects the intended buyer
-The garment has the proper 'fit'
-Does it fit a current style

Thursday, November 12, 2009

1. "Make it simple and people won’t buy. Given a choice, they will take the item that does more. Features win over simplicity, even when people realize that it is accompanied by more complexity."

2.-"while at the store, I marveled at the advance complexities of all appliances, especially ones that once upon a time were quite simple: for example, toasters, refrigerators, and coffee makers, all of which had multiple control dials, multiple LCD displays, and a complexity that defied description."
-"Why such expensive toasters? Why all the buttons and controls on steering wheels and rear-view mirrors? Because they appear to add features that people want to have. They make a difference at the time of sale, which is when it matters most."
-"Would you pay more money for a washing machine with less controls? In the abstract, maybe. At the store? Probably not."

3. Simple well-designed products will sell better ultimately than complicated, many featured, products.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Downtown Kzoo

Downtown Kalamazoo is not too large, so it is easy to walk (instead of driving) around most of the downtown, in fact it is easier for most people to walk because there are so many one way streets. The downtown had numerous banks, coffee shops, and beauty salons. There were also some disheveled people (most likely homeless) in downtown and that made it a little less pleasant for shoppers.
Burdick Street is very different than most of the rest of downtown. Burdick street is a much more comfortable shopping experience--it has less traffic, more benches, cleaner, more trees and flowers, and more shops. There were a lot of empty storefronts on Burdick Street which is bad for businesses around them, because there are fewer stores to attract them to the area and it makes the area feel more rundown.

- The sign that listed what stores were in the mall was very small and had I not known that there was a mall there I would have just thought it was another store. Therefore the sign should be larger and more colorful.
-Have more trash cans, and also have recycling bins with the trash cans
-There should be more variety in the types of shops in downtown (more than coffee shops, banks, and beauty salons).

"Light attracts. The raunchiest block on Lexington (Fifty-seventh to Fifty-eighth, west side) was notable for its lighting effects. One store, Icarus, featured blinking strobe lights and neon. The effect was so chaotic one would think that the adjoining store owners would object. They did not."(Whyte, 86)

This passage is similar to a restaurant that I saw called Mangia Mangia. It did not have nearly as many as the one in the passage, however it did have lit sign and flashing light around the border of the sign; Mangia Mangia was the only store/restaurant on the street that I saw with flashing lights. It was not very distracting, but I know that it succeeded in catching my attention because it is the only restaurant that I saw for the first time that I still remember the name of.