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Emotional Design and Its Significance for the User and the Designer

Özlem Satir

As we cannot deny the role of emotions in life, neither can we deny the fact that emotions are determinant in one's taste, behaviors and purchase decisions, i.e. in the relationship between the subject and the product in short. The answer to the question which factors are influential in the user's decisions and the fact that products are increasingly becoming similar in terms of technical characteristics, quality and price drives us to the conclusion above. Today, when it is difficult to distinguish products from each other by their technological function or quality, emotional responses can provoke the consumer to choose a particular product among a series of similar ones.

How can a product evoke our emotions? Do the emotions directly evoked by the appearance of the product or its reference to some of our experience lead us to prefer it? In other words, are emotions evoked by palpable qualities of the product or sensible ones? Would it be possible that the same product evokes different emotions in different subjects, if it was only physical being of the product that cause those?

Departing from these questions, the process of emergence of emotions will be examined. Designers’ possibility to intervene and to affect this process, and also their opportunity to use the knowledge on this process in their effort to design products coinciding with emotions of users will be dicussed.

emotion, design, perception, emotion-measurement