Log 3b: Interface in Real Life

To get ready for the day, one place everyone needs to go is the bathroom. Each thing in there has affordances and constraints.

First the doorknob. How do I get in?

First the doorknob. How do I get in?

First, the doorknob is a physical constraint. You can grab it and you can turn it. you can’t just push it or pull it. My internal memory also serves in how to use this doorknob to twist and push the door open.

In order to start getting ready, one needs to be able to see. Case in point, the light switch.

In order to start getting ready, one needs to be able to see. Case in point, the light switch.

This is a simple switch. It affords you light, but it an only move inteo directions. One will only turn the light on, one will only turn the light on. There is nothing additional in there to confuse us.

Brushing my teeth.

Brushing my teeth.

The physical constraint of my toothbrush makes me aware that I should hold it by the handle, not the bristles. While individual perception can allow for other affordances, I know from internal memory and external knowledge  that this is for brushing teeth. he visible hint is the size of the brush head.
All of this seems natural, but really it’s just effective interface design.

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