Monthly Archives: September 2006

Product Design Aimed at Limiting User Capability

The Canon G3In product development, a great deal of effort is made in specifying a product’s affordances – the capabilities and actions that it will provide to the user. A product developer in the UK recently launched Architectures of Control, a blog that documents the increasing practice of infecting products with ways to restrict, rather than expand, users’ capabilities. He has plenty of material to work with, from examples of planned obsolescence, to crippled software that forces customers toward more expensive options, to anti-skateboarding ribs that can be bolted all over public spaces.
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