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Donald Norman

Donald Norman is a professor emeritus of cognitive science at University of California, San Diego and a Professor of Computer Science at Northwestern University, but nowadays works mostly with cognitive science in the domain of usability engineering.

Norman's earlier books deal mostly with usability or with cognitive psychology, but Things That Make Us Smart also makes a few remarks of critical nature regarding our society, in particular Norman dislikes the content-less nature of television and bad museum exhibits. Lately he has tended to focus on the positive. He loves products which are enjoyable to use, a feature which he attributes to putting together emotion and design, or heart and mind. He has explained this in detail in his book Emotional Design.

He is a promoter of the concept of Information appliances, which he has covered in his book The Invisible Computer.

He collaborates with Jakob Nielsen and Bruce "Tog" Tognazzini in the Nielsen Norman Group.



Norman has a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering from MIT and a Doctor of Philosophy in psychology from the University of Pennsylvania. He also holds a honorary degree from the University of Padua in Padua, Italy. He has been a professor of computer science (at Northwestern University), psychology and cognitive science (at University of California, San Diego). He has also worked for Apple Computer at Apple's Advanced Technology Group and for Hewlett-Packard.

Partial bibliography


  • Human information processing: An introduction to psychology (1975) in collaboration with Peter H. Lindsay (first author)
  • Memory and attention (1977)
  • Learning and memory (1982)


  • Direct manipulation interfaces (1985) in collaboration with E. L. Hutchins (first author) and J.D. Hollan
  • User Centered System Design: New Perspectives on Human-Computer Interaction (1986)(editor in collaboration with Stephen Draper)
  • The Design of Everyday Things (1988, originally under the title The Psychology of Everyday Things)
  • Turn signals are the facial expressions of automobiles (1992)
  • Things That Make Us Smart (1993)
  • The Invisible Computer (1999)
  • Emotional Design (2003)

See also

External links

Last updated: 08-01-2005 11:37:42
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