Readings #1

Sengers “The Engineering of Experience.”

A very interesting article overall, but there was one point I agreed with in part 6 that really stood out. Adopting a Taylorism-centered mindset to designing your daily experience to be more efficient and enjoyable seems to be straightforward, but one forgets to account for the human-factor. The fact that as humans, we are not perfect, we are not made of code, and we are more likely than not unpredictable. The example of trying to engineer a more efficient housewife schedule through motion studies shows this perfectly. It is impossible to fully engineer and control the tasks of taking care of children and running a household. Focusing greatly on improving the efficiency of this experience greatly reduced the pleasure of the work that had no need to be more efficient in the first place.

Wright, McCarthy, & Meekison “Making Sense of Experience”

The most interesting part of this article to me was dissecting the four threads of experience, particularly the sensual and the emotional. As designers, we often fail to think about how the experience of using a product will make us feel as we are focused on the effectiveness of it’s operation. For example, a pair of scissors might cut paper very well, but they are crude and bulky, resulting in uncomfortable sensation during use and a negative emotional mindset towards the product. Being able to distinguish between the two is also very important as we need to recognize what improves each area of an experience. What might improve the emotional response of an experience might not always provide the same sensual response, and vice versa.



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