My Robot Gets Me · How Social Design Can Make New Products More Human · Book Review

My Robot Gets Me

In “My Robot Gets Me: How Social Design Can Make New Products More Human,” author Carla Diana explores the fascinating intersection of design, technology, and human interaction. The book provides a compelling narrative on the importance of incorporating social design principles when creating new technological products, particularly robots. Diana, a seasoned designer with experience in the tech industry, offers an insider’s view into the process of making robots and other tech products more relatable, user-friendly, and ultimately, more human.

One of the book’s strengths lies in its holistic approach. Diana doesn’t simply focus on the aesthetics or mechanics of design; she delves into the psychology of human-robot interaction, drawing from fields like anthropology, behavioral science, and even philosophy. She argues that social design isn’t merely an afterthought but a fundamental aspect that must be integrated from the onset of product development. Through case studies and real-world examples, the author illustrates how social design has made products more accessible and appealing to users. From voice-activated assistants to companion robots for the elderly, the book offers insights into how thoughtful design can establish a meaningful connection between humans and machines.

Diana’s writing is accessible and engaging, making complex design principles understandable to lay readers. The book is peppered with illustrations and diagrams that supplement the text, providing a more complete understanding of the subject matter. However, some readers might find that the book could benefit from diving deeper into the ethical implications of human-like robots, an area that feels somewhat underexplored given its significance.

In summary, “My Robot Gets Me” is a captivating read for anyone interested in how technology can be designed to enhance, rather than detract from, the human experience. It serves as both an introduction to social design and a guide for industry professionals, providing valuable insights into making technology more empathetic and engaging. If you’ve ever wondered how design can transform our interactions with technology for the better, this book offers compelling answers.