The Design of Future Things

  • by Donald A. Norman
  • Narrated by Bill Quinn
  • 5 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In The Design of Future Things, best-selling author Donald A. Norman presents a revealing examination of smart technology, from smooth-talking GPS units to cantankerous refrigerators. Exploring the links between design and human psychology, he offers a consumer-oriented theory of natural human-machine interaction that can be put into practice by the engineers and industrial designers of tomorrows thinking machines. A fascinating look at the perils and promise of the intelligent objects of the future, The Design of Future Things is a must-read for anyone interested in the dawn of a new era in technology.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

The design of future cars - a view from 2007

If you could sum up The Design of Future Things in three words, what would they be?

Don Norman is one of the foremost minds in the psychology of things, and how we interact with them. Always a pleasure to hear his thoughts, although already a bit dated.

What did you like best about this story?

The book is on one hand a good view of design psychology in a time where machines are becoming more and more smart and automated, and interaction more a question of them communicating with us in the right way (and second guessing us gently rather than forcefully) than us understanding their workings fully.

Any additional comments?

Sadly, a lot of the book is about cars and "smart homes", and it was written before the true advent of cloud computing and the smart phone. It's absolutely worth a listen, even if it's a view from the recent past, which is fascinating in itself.

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- Lieberoth (

The Voice is over BAD, but Don Normand is worse

If you like to imagine what the future will be like with talking refrigerators, Rosie the robot, and a car named Hal this book will be fine for you. I found the certainty he predicts with arrogant and spooky enough for me to want to move into a log cabin in the back country of Alaska. The most appalling part is when Mr. Normand actually states that design needs to be made into a science. This man has clearly spent too many years in academia sipping whiskey in his ivory tower.
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- Joe

Book Details

  • Release Date: 12-01-2009
  • Publisher: Audible Studios