On my recent trip home to see my family for the weekend, I was momentarily baffled. As I was watching cartoons with my 4-year-old niece, she grabbed my phone and started searching silly YouTube videos about cats. I wasn’t baffled by the videos she found; I was baffled by how easily a 4-year-old could pick up and navigate a cell phone. In the age that we live in now, technology comes second nature to someone who has never seen a world without it. To a 4-year-old today, a touch screen is the most intuitive canvas.
Have you ever thought about how intuitive the iPhone is? How do we innately pick up and use this device? How are the gestures and the touch screen something that we can easily grasp? It was not an accident; rather it was created by design.
The iPhone was designed for ease of use. Today, you can literally talk to your phone and ask questions (and yes, I am terrified when Siri talks back.) Every part of the iPhone’s functionality was thought out and designed in a way to create an intuitive product.
Sometimes we overlook intuitive design and let it blend in with our life. In this TED talk, John Hodgman, comedian and actor, comments on the iPhone saying, “This is design that once you saw it you forgot about it.” (Just as a side note, Hodgman was famous for being the “PC” in the Mac vs. PC adds that Apple aired in the 2000’s. Intuitive design must have made him change his computing preference.)
Gannon University and college in general is an example of intuitive design. At first things will seem new and foreign as it will be a departure from high school life. But as you blend into your first semester, things will begin to come to you. As you head into your second year, you will know what to expect and how to confront it.
The further you get in your college career, the more intuitive things become. That’s not to say there won’t be challenges and obstacles. Nor will everyone’s college experience be the same. But if you let yourself immerse in college you will find things will be simple and intuitive, just like a 4-year-old using an iPhone.