By Dan Lockton with David Harrison and Neville A. Stanton
The Design with Intent Toolkit has been in the works for a while and is now available online as a download here. The toolkit is robust, consisting of over 101 cards that provide “gambits,” or patterns, which provide many ways that designs can influence people’s behavior. The cards are organized into 8 lenses, or “disciplinary worldviews.”
For my thesis, the “Interaction Lens” and the “Cognitive Lens” in particular could be helpful. Within Interaction, a few ideas include giving feedback, either during behavior or later, as summaries of behavior, to show people the effects of their actions.
The Cognitive Lens section builds on principles of psychology, including those by Cialdini and Thaler and Sunstein (who wrote Nudge). I find the ideas of commitment, emotional engagement, and social proof especially interesting.
The “Ludic Lens” is another helpful set; many of these cards showcase principles of games or play. I don’t at this time expect to delve into this type of design but it is an option I’ve considered for the future.
One aspect of the cards that surprised me on closer examination is the realization that many provide ideas which seem quite unethical in nature. The creators themselves even write in the card deck that, for example, the “Machiavellian Lens” approaches, which follow the principle that the ‘end justifies the means,’ “will often be considered unethical, but nevertheless are commonly used to control and influence consumers.” The “Security Lens” and even some of the Cognitive Lens ideas also contain many questionable practices. Although Lockton says the cards are meant as a “idea generation tool, provoking design ideas by asking questions and giving examples of particular principles in action” (www.danlockton.com/dwi/Main_Page) I find it troubling that ideas such as “degrading performance,” “slow response,” and even “threat of injury” are included in this set of cards. I am uncertain as to what the purpose of these particular cards is; merely to provoke? Or are designers meant to accept and continue using these practices? (Update: see Dan’s answer to my questions in a comment below)