1 minute read

I have a problem.

Every time I go out of my house and lock the door, 5 seconds later my brain forgets whether I actually locked the door or not.

It goes a bit like this:

Then, I walk back 20 meters to my front door and check whether I locked it or not.

I started thinking. I thought it was me.

But it turns out that the problem isn’t me, the problem is doors themselves.

Doors are just badly designed.

When you think about it, almost all doors, not all of them, but almost all doors just give very bad feedback. Feedback is the response you get from an object with respect to taking a certain action, like locking it.

When you close a door, how do you know if you closed it successfully? There is no confirmation message, no green light, the only thing you hear is the sound of the lock clicking into place, but for me that is not enough.

Now let me give an example of doors with good feedback.

Last month, I was at the Centre Pompidu in Paris and these are their lockers:

Amazing right!?

When you are looking for a locker it is immediately obvious which ones are in use (red) and which ones are available (green).

When you put your stuff in the locker and lock it, the light flicks from green to red, indicating that it is locked. Feedback! You know exactly the effect of your action.

Anyway, so I was there and I put my stuff in the locker and locked it. The light flicked from green to red.

I walked away.

I looked back and I saw a red locker…

…I ran back and gave quick tug on the door.

It was locked.

Maybe it’s not the doors after all.