Is UX Design Clicking?

Last year I was walking through a book shop and this book jumped out at me, maybe it was the title ‘Clicking’ or the impact of the bold graphic cover, whatever it was I ended up getting it.

The book Clicking was about how and why some people click. The book talked through different scenarios, such as hostage situations, sharing interests and even sharing DNA patterns such as thumb prints, all very interesting.

After reading this book one thing really stuck in my mind, a story about computer user testing, it went something like this…

Tests were done with two sets of people group A and group B

Group A where asked to use a computer that was running slow and struggling with an standard user error messaging, then the users were asked “how does this computer make you feel?”, key emotions such as frustrated, annoyed and even angry.

Group B were given the same struggling computer, but this time the computer communicated to the user how it feeling, it said something along the lines of “I know you want me to run faster, but I am really struggling at the moment, I’m so sorry if I could go faster I would etc.”.

This time, the results were totally different, the computer had created empathy, this empathy left the users feeling calmer and some even felt sorry for the computer.

So this left me thinking, as UX designers are we really clicking with these powerful human traits?

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