We first went to visit Blueprint Office, where many creative furniture were displayed. There was a phone booth in the middle of the office, which is called Framery Q. Framery Q is a personal soundproof space to make private calls or concentrate on personal work. There is a air ventilation system inside to make sure the air is circulating and also keep the balance of temperature inside the booth and outside the booth. Though people inside the booth could be seen by people outside, the technology to keep the sound staying inside the space gives the users the sense of security from no letting others hear what they are communicating about. And the quiet ventilation helps to create a more comfortable working environment for users.
After visiting the modern Blueprint Office, we went to visit a cathedral nearby. The cathedral was basically the same as other cathedrals I used to visit. It had religious decorations, like Christ on the cross, rose windows, peaceful organ music, dim yellowish light and burning candles. The space inside the cathedral was really different from the outside. When we were standing outside the cathedral, we were surrounded by noise from all directions created by vehicles, machines and people. The moment we stepped into the cathedral and closed the gate, the gate seemed to completely cut off the noise from the cathedral. And with the warm yellowish light casting down, the slow and gentle organ music coming in to our ears, the the unique rose windows that only cathedrals would have, my mood was gradually changed. It was more and more peaceful, and for the religious and solemn atmosphere I could feel and the super quiet environment, I naturally slowed down my pace and try not to make any noise. From what I saw, what I heard, what I emotionally felt from this space, I just spontaneously changed my behaviour for the environment.
Then we left the cathedral and walked to a exercise park. There were some free and public exercise machines in the park, which were in light green. And the handles of the machines were black, which was a really obvious contrast of colour that could let users easily know where to grab and have the conceptual model of how to use the machines. There were explanations of how to use the machines properly on the pillars, which told users the correct usage of the machines. But even we played with the machines without reading those instructions, we could feel whether we were using them correctly from our physical feeling and the movement of the machines. If we felt some parts of our muscle were being used or the arms of the machines were moving then it meant we were probably using them in a correct way. So the design and mappings of the machines told us how to use them and we had knowledge in our heads of how to operate them. With the instructions we learned knowledge in the world, which was the correct way of using them. And after we used the machines, we perceived the changes of our body and the machines, and we understood what happened and compared them to our goal of using those machines to see whether they were working as we expected.
After playing with the exercise machines, we went to a small park to experience different textures of ground with our eyes closed. I was led by my partner by holding her arm, and I could not get really specific directions that we were going to in this way. I felt some shadow casting down from trees and leaves, even though I know it was created by the leaves, I was still quite afraid of bumping into a tree. And when we moved from grass ground to cement ground, I could feel the soft texture turned into the hard one immediately. And when we were walking on fallen leaves, the crushing sounds that we created gave me a really clear perception that I was on leaves and I automatically formed the scene of feet surrounded by fallen leaves in my brain.
We changed our behaviour and used the exercise machines with knowledge in our head, and we perceive the change from our physical feelings, or in the case of the cathedral visit, we did not get any complain from people inside the cathedral, from this appearance we could evaluate whether we were doing things in the right way. From the walk in the last park, I knew how important visual sense is in our senses and how senses work together to build up our whole sense of the world.
Norman, D. (1988) The design of everyday things. Revised and expanded edition. Cambridge: MIT Press.