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In Defense of Eye Candy

Post #1334 • April 22, 2009, 9:12 AM

Stephen P. Anderson:

For starters, aesthetics is concerned with anything that appeals to the senses—not just what we see, but what we hear, smell, taste, and feel. In short, how we perceive and interpret the world. As user experience professionals, we must consider every stimulus that might influence interactions.

Perhaps more importantly, “aesthetics examines our affective domain response to an object or phenomenon” (according to Wikipedia). In other words, aesthetics is not just about the artistic merit of web buttons or other visual effects, but about how people respond to these elements. Our question becomes: how do aesthetic design choices influence understanding and emotions, and how do understanding and emotions influence behavior?

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