#11: Don’t Use Anthropomorphism if it Does Not Serve Any Purpose

February 13th 2012

Part 11 of the series 11 Golden Rules of Anthropomorphism and Design

Anthropomorphism can be a powerful tool in product design. But there are also risks involved that urge designers to be careful in their implementation. This final Golden Rule is also a warning: Don’t use anthropomorphism simply to ‘dress up’ a product; it will make it distracting and confusing, and although it may increase the initial appeal of the product, people will soon lose interest for it, as the promise of human likeness is empty.

Share your thoughts and join the technology debate!public: 1


Posted 21/02/2012 – 03:29

Why can't the use of anthropormorphism be used in design to create a sense of playfulness and help us connect to objects? As a kid, I attributed human qualities to inanimate objects...(that's what dolls are.) And that type of play, allowed me to explore and imagine various roles and personalities. It also helped me learn to empathize with others. is anthropomorphism really so bad? Maybe we need that sense of play and fun to inspire us and remind us of those values.

ELMANCO / Stefano Ricci
Posted 14/02/2012 – 16:44

I'm totally agree!

What is your view on the coronavirus?

Siri Beerends: I really embrace the idea that viruses can teach us a lesson in modesty. It is necessary that our position as the dominant species on the planet is being challenged. I also agree that it is a mistake to think that we are becoming Gods. But unfortunately, this is actually what is happening now. Corona doesn’t teach us to be modest, it teaches us how we can -as quickly as possible- go back to business as usual: saving our capitalistic economy.

Already a member? Login.