Basic points about memoryIn general terms, human memory is the natural storage for the data right in the human brain. It reacts to the outer stimuli, collects the data, processes it and organizes in different ways. Also, it enables a person to access the needed data collected in the memory when it's needed. However, it doesn't present the perfect mechanism as it's influenced by a big number of factors of physical and emotional nature. Basically, psychologists mention three types of memory: - sensory memory holds the data for a short moment when we perceive it with our physical senses like hearing, vision or touch; - short-term memory (working memory) allows a person to keep some data remembered for a short period of time without repetitions; - long-term memory presents the storage for big quantities of diverse data which could be saved for long periods of time, potentially up to the whole lifetime. The effective methods of getting the information kept in long-term memory are repetitions and associations. Taking a look at the scheme below, which was provided in the article by Learning Solutions Magazine, we can see the basic flow of data from the first outer stimulus to the long-term memory. Creating the flow of interactions with a website or a mobile application, UX designers have to take this factor into account. Surely, they aim at long-term memory which will keep the core data about the app and will allow using the interface easily again and again. Knowing the steps moving the data to this storage enables designers to set the effective strategy of data perception and necessary repetitions. Also, it helps to organize the data on the screen properly and strengthen information architecture of the product.
Basic laws of memoryThree core aspects of memorizing which are mentioned by specialists in psychology are very simple: 1. Concentration. To remember a thing or chunk of data, a person needs to concentrate on it. Otherwise, the chances are high that the data will be discarded on the level of short-term memory. 2. Association. The memory presents the huge network of links connecting different data. If a person builds the association which links the new data or object with something well-known or kept in long-term memory, the chances of memorizing get higher. 3. Repetition. It is one of the effective ways to activate the data in working memory several times until it moves to the long-term memory storage. Organization of the interface content based on these three points performs with visual hierarchy and perception which can mark important layout elements that should be remembered and make the interaction easier. Cinema App
Expert explorations of memoryThere are also some laws and rules which were concluded from various research, experiments and practical testing. Among them, we would mention Miller's Law and Hick's Law.
The number of objects an average person can hold in working memory is about seven.This exploration was offered on the basis of scientific research by George Miller in 1956 psychological review "The magical number seven, plus or minus two: Some limits on our capacity for processing information". In general terms, it states that short-term memory of an average human is able to keep and process about seven objects or chunks of data plus/minus two at once. Obviously, the formulation given here is generalized as the real flow depends on many factors, including the nature of information. Later studies, for example, the review by Richard Shiffrin and Robert Nosofsky called "Seven plus or minus two: A commentary on capacity limitations" provided deeper insights into the work of working memory. In particular, the authors mention that the number of objects which a person can remember at once after they were presented is dependent on the nature of the objects, on average with seven for digits, six for letters and about five for words. It gives the brain abilities to quickly process information, recognize its character and connection to the objects already existing in long-term memory and finalize memorizing. In design perspective, this information plays the vital role in building up the usable and clear layout. Interfaces, which demand to remember too many options at once, can create the tension and get users irritated even if they aren't able to describe the reason of unpleasant emotions. Magic.co landing page
The more elements people get, the harder it is to make a choice.At the first glance, it seems that this law is not about memory, still, the connection exists. Memory is one of the mechanisms that protects people from negative experience. The more options people get at once, the more distracted they get with numerous associations which can be called - and that's impossible to predict how good or bad they can be in this particular case. In addition, giving many options for the choice at once, again we can overload users memory with the bigger number then the working memory can process. In particular, this factor needs special attention in cases of platforms for e-commerce, which should keep the hard balance between giving the user all the necessary information and overwhelming him or her with too many options. Finding this harmony is one of the major challenges for UX designers. Cafe Coupon App