So the size matters.
Since “big” tends to have overwhelming power, it can be alienating. Big stuff doesn’t let you engage. It could even make us feel anxious and helpless.
On the other hand, smallness is not all about powerlessness and vulnerability. Small things fit our delicate body really nicely.
There are certain types of small objects that we have experimented with and refined, over thousands of years. Just about any tools….from pencils, brushes, knives, shovels to musical instruments. Always relying on our body size, we invested an enormous amount of resources to seek the optimal “fit” to maximize our performance using those tools.
In ”The Glass Cage,” Nicholas Carr describes that the ancient Greek tools were designed with “an exquisite consideration of the ways an implement’s form, weight, and balance affect a worker’s productivity, stamina and health.”
He goes on to describe that in Ancient Asian tools, “there are signs that instruments of labor were carefully designed with the physical and psychological well-being of the worker in mind.”
Products and tools that involve our sensory, physical and cognitive actions are deigned to be body-conscious.
Body-conscious design must be small and apprehendable.
Though “apprehendable” objects lets us understand that using our body, senses and cognition, touch is especially critical.
By touching, holding, manipulating things, we truly understand the objects. Physical apprehension is deeply connected to our cognitive apprehension.
When we are provided a product that is apprehendable by our internal abilities, we can perform great and feel satisfaction.