Why we should think about expectations, not just experiences 为什么我们需要考虑预期,而不仅仅是体验。

作者:Adrian Zumbrunnen

I recently had a discussion with a client about why visual design is an inalienable asset in contemporary web/app design. I tried to explain how form follows content and how they mutually depend on and influence each other. The more I thought about this, the more captivating it became, and the more I started to sound like a preacher talking about the universal laws of aesthetics derived from nature. I felt it won’t take long until someone would interrupt me and ask: “Ah great point. Speaking of nature, how is hiking in the Swiss Alps?”. 最近我跟客户讨论为什么现在网页及应用设计中视觉如此重要。我努力解释什么是形式追随功能以及它们之间存在的相互关联和影响。这问题越思考越觉得有趣,我也越来越像传教的牧师一样,谈论源自于自然的美学普遍规律。我想不久就会有人打断我的高谈阔论:“恩,你说得很对,说道自然,你觉得在阿尔卑斯山上徒步怎样?”

We’ve all been there. Selling visual design and user experience is hard.You’re never going to create memorable experiences without communicating your ideas in a convincing and concise way, simply because if you don’t, they’ll never get enough support to see the light of day. After all, as designers, we are not in the technology business —we’re in the communication business. 我们都知道,出售视觉设计和用户体验是件很难的活儿。如果不能简单而又有说服力的表述你的想法,就永远没办法创造难忘的体验。因为如果你不会表达,他们就没有办法想象那美妙的场景。因此,作为一个设计师,你不但要活儿好,还需要良好的沟通。

One thing that constantly occupied my mind while writing about distraction-free reading experiences was the mutual dependency between form and content. We always say that form follows content, because this is the way a good design process is supposed to happen. But when it comes to experiencing design, that’s not what’s happening. The way we experience and perceive content, to a high degree, depends on our expectations and the context in which we look at it. 当我在写关于无干扰阅读体验的时候,有个东西老是蹦到的我脑子里来,那就是形式和内容的相互关系。我们常说形式追随内容,这样好的设计才能诞生。但是说到体验设计,可能就不是这么回事了。我们体验和接受内容的方式,更大程度上是基于我们对内容的预期。

The Washington Post conducted a famous experiment, in which Joshua Bell, one of the world’s most talented violinists plays some of the most difficult classical pieces ever written on his multi-million dollar Stradivari violin in a Metro subway station, wearing a baseball cap. Most of you might have heard about the outcome. Out of over a thousand people, only seven stopped to listen for a few minutes. He made a total of 32$ with his performance. That’s pretty low when you consider that he usually fills concert halls where single seats get sold for over a $100 a piece. 华盛顿邮报做了一个著名的实验,约夏·贝尔,世界顶级小提琴演奏家戴着棒球帽在地体站演奏了一些非常难的经典曲目,用的也是他价值数百万美元的斯特拉迪瓦里小提琴。这个故事你们应该已经听过了。上千人路过,但只有七个人停下脚步听了几分钟。这次演出他总共赚了32美元,而通常在音乐厅一个座位就超过100美元。

This experiment showed how the context in which music and art takes place changes its perception. Social scientists discovered something that struck a chord with me: expectations change our experience as well. 这个实验显示在音乐和艺术方面内容发生的地点会影响认知。社会学家的发现引起了我的共鸣:预期会影响我们的体验。

Expectations change our experience 预期影响体验

Our thoughts and our perception of things change — as soon as we think about them. Thoughts follow to new and more complex thoughts that may eventually change the initial idea altogether. 我们对事物的认知和想法会改变–从我们想到它们的那一刻开始。思维是循序渐进的,更多复杂的思考最终会改变初始的想法。

Stick with me here and let’s have a look at two examples: 让我们看两个例子:





Take a guess, which one do you assign more value to? The one set in beautiful, carefully crafted typography? Or the other one, set in Arial surrounded by lots of distractions? Will reading these very sentences change your perception altogether? If you are like most people, you will automatically choose the first one. But what if someone would switch the content and take the content from the badly designed site and put it into the beautiful site? What we would end up with is nothing but an illusion. In other words, a lie.Not only does the bad design turn us off, it strips away value from content. 猜猜哪个看上去会更有价值?是用美观的、精心设计的字体的方案一?还是用Arial字体,包含很多其它内容的方案二?阅读这些句子会改变你的观念么?普通大众会潜意识的选择第一个。但是如果有人把不好的设计网站的内容换到漂亮的网站上呢?我们除了好看的外观什么都得不到。或者说,一个谎言。不好的设计部仅仅让人失望,它还降低了内容的价值。

Margot Bloomstein, content strategist and speaker at this year’s Responsive Web Summit said that content affects experience and a user’s perception of an experience. She said that waiting in a line can be delightful, if there is content to discover while doing so. Margot Bloomstein,内容策略官和发言人在今年的可响应网站峰会上说到,内容会影响体验和用户感知的体验。她还说排队等待的时间也可以令人愉悦,只要在等待的时候有内容可以去发现。

Obviously, the same applies to the web. Only that people have a different feeling about space and time and that they are somewhat more stressed. If we don’t take the time and put hard work in the visual aspect of our work, many users will probably already have a bad or average preconception of our content. Worse: they might not even read it. Blind tests have shown that even the best wine connoisseurship don’t actually differentiate between the taste of a single wine served from different types of glasses. But when people are aware of the shape and quality of a glass, whether it has a great mouthfeel, or produces a great sound etc., it positively affects their experience and taste. 同样的道理也适用于网站,只是人们对于时空的感觉会有差异,同时会更有压力。如果我们不能利用有效的时间,在视觉方面努力做更多的工作,很多用户就会对内容产生不好的或者先入为主的偏见。更糟糕的是:他们可能根本不去阅读。盲目测试已经证明即使是最好的葡萄酒鉴赏家都不能区分不同杯子里装的同一瓶酒。但是当普通人注意到杯子的外观和质量时,它的口感和体验可能就会受到影响。

Again, the same applies to the web: 同样的事情也适用于网络:

Expectations actively shape our distorted reality. 预期会让现实失真。

Our design decisions define the user’s expectation, which can eventually have a huge impact on their perception of content. So in many ways, when we think about design, we should ask ourselves questions like: what expectations will people have when they see this? Did we build anticipation? What will users expect if they interact with this element? 我们的设计决策定义用户的预期,而且最终会对内容认知产生巨大影响。因此,在我们思考设计的时候,我们应该自问:当人们看到这东西时会有什么预期?我们建立了怎样的预期?他们与这些元素交互的时候有什么期待?

Experience eventually emerges when form meets content. 体验最终会出现,当形式满足内容。

Knowing the answer to these questions can help us create more seamless experiences that feel integrated and honest. This might bring up even further questions. For example, an author might wonder: “Will my content be read in such an environment?”, while the designer might wonder “How might the quality of the writing impact people’s perception of my design skills?”. 想明白这些问题的答案能帮助我们创建更多完整而诚实的无缝体验。这可能会带来新的问题,例如,作者可能想知道:“我的内容在这种环境中会被阅读么?”,同时设计师会想知道:“文字的质量会不会影响人们对我设计技能的认知?”

So when Aristoteles famously said “The whole is bigger than the sum of it’s part”, it turns out that this statement holds more truth than we might have ever imagined. 正如亚里士多德的那句名言“1+1>2”,这句名言比我们预想的更有深意。





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