Tragic Design
The Impact of Bad Product Design and How to Fix It
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: April 2017
Pages: 220

Bad design is everywhere, and its cost is much higher than we think. In this thought-provoking book, authors Jonathan Shariat and Cynthia Savard Saucier explain how poorly designed products can anger, sadden, exclude, and even kill people who use them. The designers responsible certainly didn’t intend harm, so what can you do to avoid making similar mistakes?

Tragic Design examines real case studies that show how certain design choices adversely affected users, and includes in-depth interviews with authorities in the design industry. Pick up this book and learn how you can be an agent of change in the design community and at your company.

You’ll explore:

  • Designs that can kill, including the bad interface that doomed a young cancer patient
  • Designs that anger, through impolite technology and dark patterns
  • How design can inadvertently cause emotional pain
  • Designs that exclude people through lack of accessibility, diversity, and justice
  • How to advocate for ethical design when it isn’t easy to do so
  • Tools and techniques that can help you avoid harmful design decisions
  • Inspiring professionals who use design to improve our world
Table of Contents
Product Details
About the Author
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Customer Reviews

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by PowerReviews
oreillyTragic Design
 
5.0

(based on 3 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

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100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Easy to understand (3)
  • Helpful examples (3)

Cons

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Reviewed by 3 customers

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5.0

A must read in design schools!

By Dan makes UX

from San Francisco

About Me Designer, Educator

Pros

  • Concise
  • Easy to understand
  • Helpful examples

Cons

  • Short

Best Uses

  • Intermediate
  • Novice
  • Student

Comments about oreilly Tragic Design:

This book (given that this is the unedited version) is very interesting. I am looking forward to read to whole thing! I think it should become a reference in design school, to teach new designers about the consequences of their decisions.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Amazing so far

By Evan Burchard

from Berkeley, CA

About Me Developer, Educator

Pros

  • Easy to understand
  • Helpful examples
  • Well-written

Cons

    Best Uses

      Comments about oreilly Tragic Design:

      I usually read tech books looking to stay current or sharpen my skills somehow. It's not often that a tech book presents a worldview that goes beyond "learn x better/do y better."

      As technologists, we too often build things without consideration for real impacts to people's privacy, dignity, and as this book tragically shows, at times their lives themselves. This book should shatter that complacency for anyone with a semblance of humanity.

      (8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Fascinating look at the consequences of bad UX design

      By Sam

      from Sunnyvale, CA

      About Me Maker, Marketer

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Concise
      • Easy to understand
      • Helpful examples
      • Interesting
      • Unique
      • Well-written

      Cons

      • Short

      Best Uses

      • Business
      • Expert
      • Intermediate
      • Novice
      • Student

      Comments about oreilly Tragic Design:

      I read the early release which contains what seems to be the first draft of the first couple of chapters and I'm excited to read the rest of the book. I found it to be a unique and very interesting look at the consequences of bad UX.

      I think it'll be a must-read for anyone working in design or support for B2B and Enterprise products/services. In the consumer space, bad UX means your business won't grow. In the enterprise space, the consequences of bad UX can be tragic.

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