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Designing Across Senses: A Multimodal Approach to Product Design

Designing Across Senses: A Multimodal Approach to Product Design

by Christine W. Park, John Alderman

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Today we have the ability to connect speech, touch, haptic, and gestural interfaces into products that engage several human senses at once. This practical book explores examples from current designers and devices to describe how these products blend multiple interface modes together into a cohesive user experience.

Authors Christine Park and John Alderman explain the basic principles behind multimodal interaction and introduce the tools you need to root your design in the ways our senses shape experience. This book also includes guides on process, design, and deliverables to help your team get started.

The book covers several topics within multimodal design, including:

  • New Human Factors: learn how human sensory abilities allow us to interact with technology and the physical world
  • New Technologies: explore some of the technologies that enable multimodal interactions, products, and capabilities
  • Multimodal Products: examine different categories of products and learn how they deliver sensory-rich experiences
  • Multimodal Design: learn processes and methodologies for multimodal product design, development, and release

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781491954195
Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
Publication date: 03/22/2018
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 296
File size: 27 MB
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About the Author

Christine Park has designed products spanning fashion, furniture, print, exhibitions, and interfaces. From haute couture to healthcare, she is passionate about the way design can improve and transform our daily lives. She has helped companies like Intel, Microsoft XBox, Samsung, Nike, and many others to develop experiences for the screen, the living room, public spaces, and the body. Her work has won awards and patents, has been featured in numerous publications, and has been showcased at New York Fashion Week, the International Contemporary Furniture Fair, and the Cannes Lions Festival.

Currently, she is the Design Director of Livongo, creating new devices and services to improve the experience and quality of healthcare. In her spare time, she travels, plays video games, and is learning how to paddleboard with her dog, Barnaby.

John Alderman is a creative planner who helps companies develop and execute strategies for innovative brands, content, and design. He began his career as a writer and editor covering technology, internet, and culture at Mondo 2000, and Wired, and then worked as a creative director at Razorfish and The Barbarian Group. He writes about how technology, design, business, and culture shape each other, and transform how we live. He has previously written two books: Sonic Boom (a New York Times Notable Book) and Core Memory (a Design Observer Book of the Year), and has contributed to Domus, Étapes, Rhizome, The Independent, and The Guardian. He has been interviewed by BBC, NPR, CNN and many others. He likes to travel and play music, sometimes at the same time.

Table of Contents

Preface xi

Chapter 1 Returning to Our Senses 1

If a Tree Falls in the Forest 1

The Sound of Violence 3

Experience Is Physical 5

People Have Modalities 9

Devices Have Modes 11

Human Modalities + Device Modes = Interfaces 14

Physical Information: The New Data 19

Sensing, Understanding, Deciding, and Acting: The New Human Factors 21

Focus: The New Engagement 24

Multimodality Makes a Wider Range of Human and Product Behaviors Possible 26

How Multimodality Affects Design 27

Multimodal Design Is Cross-Disciplinary 34

Summary 37

Chapter 2 The Structure of Multimodal Experiences 39

The Human Slice of Reality: Umwelt and Sensibility 40

Assembling Multimodal Experiences: Schemas and Models 43

The Building Blocks of Multimodal Experience 44

Summary 49

Chapter 3 Sensing 51

The Three Main Categories of Stimuli 51

Defining the Senses: Dimension, Resolution, and Range 53

Sensory Focus: Selecting, Filtering, and Prioritizing Information 54

Reflexes 55

Our Senses and Their Unique Properties 56

Vision 56

Hearing 62

Auditory Interfaces 64

Touch (Somatosensory or Tactile Abilities) 66

Smell (Olfactory Ability) 72

Taste (Gustatory Ability) 74

Sixth Senses and More 76

Summary 77

Chapter 4 Understanding and Deciding 79

The Foundations of Understanding: Recognition, Knowledge, Skills, and Narratives 81

Aware and Non-Aware: Fast and Slow Thinking 84

Agency: Balancing Self-Control and Problem Solving 85

Motivation, Delight, Learning, and Reward: Creating Happiness 87

Summary 88

Chapter 5 Acting 89

About Anthropometrics 90

Task Performance 94

Nonverbal Communication 95

Precision Versus Strength 97

Inferring Versus Designating Intent 99

Summary 101

Chapter 6 Modalities and Multimodalities 103

Modalities: How We Use Our Senses 105

We Shape Our Modalities, and They Shape Us 108

Attributes and Abilities of Modalities 109

Applying Modalities to Design 110

Multimodalities 112

Trusted Version and Performance Optimization 113

Attributes and Abilities of Multimodalities 117

Common Categories of Multimodalities 120

Applying Multimodality to Design 122

Summary 127

Chapter 7 The Opportunity: Transforming Existing Products and Developing New Ones 129

Key Applications of IoT: Monitor, Analyze and Decide, Control and Respond 130

"Disruptive" Technologies 134

Beginning Inquiry 137

Summary 145

Chapter 8 The Elements of Multimodal Design 147

Using Physical Information 148

Constructing Knowledge, Interactions, and Narratives 150

Summary 153

Chapter 9 Modeling Modalities and Mapping User Experiences 155

Behaviors Shared Between Users and Devices 156

Demanding Contexts and Complex Interactions Call for Alignment 157

Experience Maps and Models for Multimodality 158

Key Considerations of Multimodal Design 160

Example Maps and Models 168

Summary 182

Chapter 10 Form Factors and Configurations 183

Creating Multimodal Properties 184

Configuring Interface Modes 189

Mapping Modal Behaviors to Modal Technologies 196

Summary 207

Chapter 11 Ecosystems 209

Device Ecosystems 213

Information Ecosystems 214

Physical Ecosystems 216

Social Ecosystems 217

Specialized Ecosystems 219

Cloud Architectures: Distributing Resources Through Connectivity 219

Ecosystem, and Architecture: Applying Ecosystem Resources to Multimodal Design 222

Sensing Experiences: Answering the Door-A Doorbell, Ring, and the August Lock 223

Understanding and Deciding Experiences: Determining Distance-A Pedometer, Apple Watch, and Lyft App 224

Acting Experiences: Writing and Drawing-A Pencil, a Tablet, and the Apple Pencil 225

Summary 228

Chapter 12 Specifying Modalities: States, Flows, Systems, and Prototypes 229

Introduction: A Prototype Is a Custom Measuring Tool 229

Practice Makes Perfect 231

The Media of Multimodal Products: Information and Interactions, Understandings and Behaviors 232

The Product Development Process for Multimodal Products 233

Defining Design Requirements 236

Specifying Multimodalities 242

Summary 245

Chapter 13 Releasing Multimodal Products: Validation and Learning 247

Release Is About Process 248

Alpha Release 248

Beta Release 250

Public Release 253

The Out-of-the-Box Experience 255

Summary 256

Appendix A Further Reading 257

Appendix B Glossary 261

Index 263

Customer Reviews