Empathic Design

I think sometimes designers sometimes forget to include empathic design within their designs. Empathic design is essential when designing for people, especially special needs and handicapped people. In most of our studios, we have had to design for older people and I have tried to use empathic design while designing for those projects. I try to put myself in their shoes and think the way they think to make sure that my designs are the best they can be.

I have many things that I cherish and most of those the things are notes that people give me. My roommate leaves me notes when she leaves before I do when we have breaks. One note that is dear to me is one that she wrote one year ago about fall break. I did not talk about this note, but my boyfriend went to Europe this past summer and he wrote me this beautiful note that brought me to tears and he gave it to me at the airport right before he said goodbye. I now have that note hanging in a shadow box with a Rosary that he got me when he was in Italy. That will always be something that I will cherish and love forever.

The methodologies are good to think about. I like this site because it gives the designer pointers on how their design can be the best. The three that stood out to me is the stage of design process, designing for, with, or by people, and type of interaction. The stage of design process maps out 4 stages of the divergent and convergent parts of the design process which are discover, define, develop, and deliver. Discover means to explore the state of design, define means to seek the problem, develop means to start designing and creating, and deliver is to make the design final. The next method is designing for, with or by people with means to have people help with the design in different ways. The last method that stood out to me is the type of interaction which there are four categories of interactions. They are learn, look, ask, and try. Learn is to analyses the data collected, look is to observe people, ask is to find important information, and try is to create proposed designs.

The probe exercise was a good exercise for designing for people’s needs. Our individual liked coffee and her dog, fall clothes, and the simple things in life. So my group decided to make a small boutique store with a coffee shop that was pet friendly. It will sell fall clothing and have happy upbeat music. We thought that this was the perfect store for our individual. I learned that designing for people’s needs is very important to make people feel comfortable.

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