Comment le design intuitif communique-t-il ?

Jérôme Guibourgé - Audrey Moutat

KEYWORDS : Intuitive design, Semiotics, Intuitiveness, Factitivity, Inter-objectivity, Usability, Gestural memory, Perceptivo-practical semiosis

ABSTRACT : This article aims at determining the functional principles of intuitive design, understood as a communication device that tacitly states its usability. The goal will be to show how such a design succeeds in convoking, through object structures, sensible and sensorimotor patterns stored in the memory of the designer and the user. Taking into account both the creative approach of the designer, then freed from all formal constraints and the interpretive practice of a user who seeks to appropriate the object, intuition is thus enunciated by design in order to allow an «immediate knowledge or understanding without the intervention of a rational thought or a logical deduction». Linked to the principle of factitivity, the intuitive design offers a tacit let-know which consists in the recognition of an homologation between the bodily dispositions of a user and the sensitive properties of the objects according to the practical scene they integrate.
From a corpus of photographs of gardening tools we will show that this tacit let-know incorporates a communication process articulated in three levels: (i) Design intuitiveness in a communication device which provides a situational framework of the object; (ii) Intuitiveness of the functions through gestures: the functions of the object that participate in its usability summon user gestures; They may or may not be intuitive; (iii) Materialization of this intuitiveness: design becomes a discourse which syntax makes it possible to regulate the adjustments between the object and the user by reactivating the gestural and practical memory. Identifying these sensory and sensorimotor schemes thus articulated will allow in particular to base the grammar from which the intuitive design can communicate its intuitiveness.

To read the abstract of the article in French, click on the link below :
Comment le design intuitif communique-t-il ?

Jérôme Guibourgé - Audrey Moutat

Consultant, Enseignant à l’Ecole de Design de Nantes, Chercheur associé CeReS, Université de Limoges, jerome.guibourge[at]
Enseignant chercheur CeReS, Université de Limoges,

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François Maréchal
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