Design principles for cognitive artifacts

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Donald A. Norman
Research in Engineering Design 4(1), pages 43-50
March 1992

Modern designs are more than ever before required to be understandable and usable by their intended audience. As machines get ever more complex, it becomes essential for designers to provide a user-centered design that focuses upon the needs and abilities of the user. This paper presents an analysis of cognitive artifacts?devices designed to maintain, display, or operate upon information in order to serve a representational function. An important design consideration is the human action cycle which means that artificial devices must support both execution and evaluation.