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The often-quoted version of his cable relies on the passive voice for its punchline:. While I believe writers deserve maximum flexibility, it does help to pay attention to the most direct and dynamic way to cast a sentence. Often a dynamic verb lurks in a clunky noun, and by excavating it we can perk up the prose. Why put in an appearance when you could just show up? Why write take into consideration instead of consider? Such constructions are all too common in academic writing.

This description of an anthropology program at the University of East London takes the life out of studying human life:. It will also be of interest to students wishing to proceed to a doctorate in the anthropology of human rights and related areas. Then there is the passive voice. Some people rely too heavily on it. When lawyers want to please the court, they follow scads of lawyers before them The filing deadline was unintentionally missed.

Business writers who want to stick to convention reflexively use the passive voice The review of all positions has been completed. And C. Whether you are writing the next novel, a scholarly paper, a legal brief or a brief Tweet, be aware of the voice of your verbs. Try letting each sentence tell a little story, with an agent right there at the start. Set your protagonist in action. Binding has minimal wear. The majority of pages are undamaged with minimal creasing or tearing, minimal pencil underlining of text, no highlighting of text, no writing in margins.

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Designing Your Best Life with Bill Burnett and Dave Evans

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By virtue of their appearance in this open-access journal, articles are free to use, with proper attribution, in educational and other non-commercial settings. His research focuses on designing for product attachment and the intersection between physical and digital products. Daniel previously worked as an industrial designer, developing design solutions with global retail clients. His research interests include emotional design, self-identity, product consumption and human-centred design. Her research interests include design innovation, design methods and tools, design thinking and aesthetics.

Elise is the project leader of Materialising Memories, a research program that aims to design for improved reliving of personal memories. Her research interests include human-computer interaction, interaction design, tangible and physical interaction, people-centred design and supporting human remembering activities. Product attachment has been extensively studied across a range of disciplines with contributions made to advance theory on why and how people come to cherish their belongings.

These objects can be used to express personal values, engage in fulfilling activities or reflect ties to friends and family. While substantial contributions have been made to advance our understanding of why and how people develop an attachment to their possessions, little progress has been made towards applying this theory to design practice.

Efforts to bridge this gap between theory and practice have primarily been made in one of two ways. Despite their prevalence in the product attachment literature, the potential value of using meaningful memories and associations to promote product attachment has not yet been explored in design practice.

We adopted a research through design Frayling, approach to investigate whether it is possible to purposefully create meaning by evoking meaningful associations. The article outlines our process in applying product attachment theory to the design of six bespoke artefacts inspired by interviews conducted with three individuals who discussed details of their life stories. We evaluated the associations that came to mind for each participant while interacting with the designed artefacts to determine whether these ties brought meaning to them.

We reflect on our design process to discuss the effectiveness of our approach and the resulting artefacts in promoting the formation of meaningful associations with objects. We conclude by exploring the applicability and limitations of our findings alongside existing design strategies for promoting attachment.

The link between cherished objects and the self has been the focus of many studies in the fields of psychology, sociology, material culture and consumer behaviour e. There is a level of agreement among these researchers regarding the strong ties between people forming attachments to things and the ways in which humans construct, develop and maintain a sense of self. This definition distinguishes attachment from other consumer behaviour constructs for its associations to the self. Schultz et al. The strength of the attachment felt by an individual towards an object often changes over time Myers, While the formation of attachment often develops slowly through ongoing interactions Page, , an object may also evoke an immediate emotional response.

Several advancements in identity theory have also influenced product attachment theory due to the closeness of these two areas of research. Discussion in product attachment literature often refers to the associations that people assign to a possession. An object can hold meaning for its ties to significant memories, experiences, people, places or values.

Mugge, Schoormans, and Schifferstein suggest four possible determinants of product attachment: pleasure, self-expression, group affiliation and memories, of which all but pleasure are associative in nature. In this way, attachment to things often develop from properties beyond their materiality, extending to their links to aspects of the self or the life narrative of an individual.

Married to the Job (And Each Other)

They can arise from the history of ownership and use of a possession, perceptions of its materiality such as form, colour, texture, size and smell or from beliefs held by the individual about the kinds of people who would own or use the product Allen, The nature of these associations can vary from abstract to concrete, fitting within a spectrum from indistinct values or feelings to specific memories. The resulting image that comes to mind in regard to an object is often complex and obscure as it encompasses associations from all aspects of the product experience.

These identities and their respective characteristics influence the likelihood of the associations that individuals assign to a particular product being considered meaningful Fazio, For example, a car enthusiast will more readily develop meaningful associations to a new car model than someone with little interest in cars. This can be seen with a bicycle being associated with both personal fitness and membership within a local cycling club.

The ways in which a person infers associations as they perceive a product provides designers with opportunities to promote the formation of meaningful user-object relationships through careful consideration of various design elements. These benefits have led many design researchers to search for ways in which designers may be able to promote the formation of attachment to the products they create. From these determinants, a range of design strategies for facilitating attachment have been proposed. Schifferstein and Zwartkruis-Pelgrim suggest that designers should aim to create products that evoke enjoyment or facilitate personal associations.

Mugge et al. These studies provide promising avenues for designers seeking to promote attachment in their practice but the effectiveness of these strategies remains unverified. Several researchers have designed novel objects with an emphasis on emotional significance see Desmet et al. In their efforts to add emotional value to mobile phones through design decisions, Desmet et al.

Lacey similarly emphasises the impact of individual preferences, proposing that designers should allow consumers choice within a set of objects to increase the likelihood of attachment to mass produced products. In this paper, we build on existing product attachment literature by exploring the potential value of utilising meaningful associations in design practice. In doing so, we aim to address gaps in understanding of the consequential value of applying strategies derived from product attachment theory to design practice.