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Dynamics of Pleasure in Interface Design

Kürsat Fatih Özenc

Freud in the Beyond the Pleasure Principle insists that, in the theory of psycho-analysis... the course taken by mental events is automatically regulated by the pleasure principle. The atmosphere which surrounded by the highly computerized world, mental events mostly take part in front of the screen of computers, kiosks, cellular phones, smart products. What can be defined on the screen as a design problem is interface(s). Interface design, which has begun with textual elements and then graphical user interfaces (GUI), evaluated in terms of ergonomics, (ease of use), functionality, attractiveness. Apart from attractiveness, the emotional side of interface design has been generally neglected, in spite of the fact that emotions are the core driven forces in interfacial relation between the user and the product. Even focusing on the engineering approaches, i.e., ease of use is addressing the emotions; especially the pleasure. In order to speak on the pleasure with respect to emotions brings the object-subject, signified-signifier relation(s). Pleasure which is ignited by desire is opposed by the 'unpleasure'. Considering these terms, the dynamics of pleasure in the interface design is questioned in the context of the Operating Systems' interface design with the theoretical framework of psychoanalysis and semantics.


Pleasure, Desire, Emotions, Operating system(s), psychoanalysis, semantics, interface, signified, signifier