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Designing UI with 'Emotions'

Designing UI with ‘Emotions‘

Have you ever thought about emotions being important in UI design? Or the way we express emotions? 

Now that everything is digital, emojis/emoticons have become a medium that convey our message pretty clearly.

It’s a small yet smart UX feature that gives you the ultimate satisfaction of sending numerous emojis to anyone, anytime and anywhere.

Well, lately I gave it a thought while I was observing my own actions. Let me give you an instance: so my manager just texted me this:

Yo! I just read the blog you created, to be honest I found it Blah at first! Umm…then I thought about it with a user perspective…it’s actually amazing! Whoo! You have put some great thought in this blog…Good work.”

Well I received this message from my manager this morning for this blog…and I was like: Aww, that’s so sweet of you….and Yayyy! I can finally go ahead with it. *sighed for half a minute* Phew…no more missing deadlines. Hehe, let’s go!

Just an analogy of my observation:

    • Yo – Greeting
    • Blah – Boring
    • Umm – Thinking, paused
    • Whoo – Excited
    • Aww – Sympathy, liking
    • Yayy – Cheerful
    • Phew – Relief, sigh
    • Hehe – Happy

So basically, to analyse my own actions I have used my expressions, in my thought process and applied it in my speech. That’s what UX (User Experience) and UI (User Interface) is all about! Basically, all you do is use your expressions, give it a deep thought and create a good UI for your user to enhance their UX.

Ideally, emotions and expressions are considered as a byproduct of design and not an impel to user experience. But, emotions are definitely an important aspect of UI, for which only designers are responsible. They genuinely put thought for the user’s ultimate satisfaction because they want the user to feel the experience in the fullest. As a user we’d like that too, right? Every designer has their own thoughts and preferences when it comes to designing these emotions in regards to the products and its users.

Thanks to Robert Plutchik’s (an academic psychologist who, literally, wrote the textbook on emotions) for introducing the concept of basic eight emotions (joy, trust, fear, surprise, sadness, disgust, anger, and anticipation). He calls it the ‘Wheel of emotions’! Isn’t it amazing? it shows the relevance of those emotions varying through their levels of intensity.

Well, here’s a cool tip while designing, a designer should always keep in mind these basic emotions rather than focussing on the dissipation. Ultimately, it is the designers responsibility to ensure their user’s attention with a great UI, if the user doesn’t find or like anything interesting, they might just walk away. There should be elements of surprise, delight, curiosity, satisfaction to avoid the stage of boredom.

To conclude:

With upcoming technologies and AI – products, services and platforms will change, but these basic emotions won’t! We all have a fixed set of emotions and no matter what, there won’t be a joy 2.0. It is actually beneficial because we will never be limited to design better product relationships in the coming future. I mean… just think! The more we understand and create variations in the UI of these emotions, we are heading towards the right direction to future design.

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