Not a member yet? Register for full benefits!

Response to Podcast The Paradox of Choice

At the time of writing this, the article 'Podcast The Paradox of Choice' has been on the server for less than a day. It contains a TED podcast and a partial transcription of same. The podcast is essentially a twenty minute long, semi lucid, raving rant by philosopher Barry Schwartz, regarding his book, and the meaning of paradox of choice.

He argues on and on and on for 20 minutes as to how giving people a choice is bad, a bad thing; the more choice you have the less freedom you have, so to get more freedom your choices should be removed.

If whining was an Olympic sport, this man would have a gold medal in it, from this carry-on. However, in amongst the attempt to set himself up as the last Luddite left alive, the message itself is accurate.

If you give people an uninformed choice, or too many choices, and expect them to figure it out, they will often dither, and not really know which one to pick. Many will as he points out, simply paralyse in place, unable to pick for fear they will pick the wrong choice. Others will simply walk away instead.

This is important to remember for VR, AR, and prosthetic development. It does not matter how ground breaking, how complex, how ingenious the end-product, if the interface is not kept simple, logical, intuitive, and even gently guiding of the end user operating it, for the vast majority of cases, it will not be used.


Podcast: The paradox of choice

Staff Comments


Untitled Document .