Thursday, August 14, 2008

Martin Doors?

In The Design of Everyday Things, Donald Norman used unintuitive doors as an example of bad design--well-designed doors make it intuitive to know whether they should be pushed or pulled, but poorly-designed doors require a "Push" or "Pull" label. Apparently it was such a quintessential example that the concept of "Norman doors" now refers to unintuitive doors.

In his brilliant Comedy Central special, I think Demetri Martin has introduced the concept of what I'm going to call "Martin doors"--revolving doors that you pull (instead of push) to operate. In the clip below (the particular bit starts at about 7:20, but the whole clip is funny), he says:

I want to make a revolving door that says "pull" on it [just] to see how obedient people are.

Due to the prevalence of so many "Norman doors," people are probably so trained to look for labels on doors that some would, despite all intuition, pull the door and walk through it backwards.

No comments: