We are surrounded by objects. Even as I type this post, I am surrounded by everyday objects — computer, smartphone, mug, pens and so on and so forth. The folks at HTC have found that good design makes us happy. In a scientific study, HTC ran a test that monitored the participants’ reaction to objects commonly found in and around the home and workplace. Objects were divided into three categories: “beautiful,” “functional,” or “beautiful and functional.” HTC has come to the conclusion that if a product is both beautiful and functional, it will make people happy.
- Well-designed objects that are both beautiful and functional trigger positive emotions like calmness and contentment, reducing negative feelings like anger and annoyance by almost a third (29%)
- Purely functional objects that are not beautiful increased negative emotions like gloominess and depression by 23%
- Poor functionality hinders creativity, making it 45% more difficult to be creative
- Positive moods make us more outgoing and open to new ideas – which in turn make us more creative
- There were no major differences amongst the seven countries taking part in the study
In a New York Times article, “Why we love beautiful things,” Lance Hosey writes that we are drawn to good designs and simple geometrical shapes. That is understandable. After all, bad designs can cause frustration and even injury. But what do you think of UK-based paper company, Sheep Poo Paper?
The environmentally friendly paper is made from herbivore dung. Translated: grass-eating sheep shit. The brand, which started in 2006, offers Daffodil and Fresh Cut Grass fragrances. More astonishing, you can even get paper made only from sheep called Daisy. How’s that for functional and beautiful and environmentally friendly and… May I suggest ‘innovative’ or ‘quirky’?