Joie de Vivre

November 05, 2009
design, user experience

I had the privilege of visiting Paris for the first time this summer. I was impressed with the city on many levels, from the people to the museums to the food to the public spaces.

However, I was most impressed by the pleasure of everyday experiences. Walking down the street, I was struck by the whimsical patterns woven with cobblestones. Shopping in a market, I marveled at the perfect towers of produce. Sitting in the park, I noticed how comfortable and well maintained the chairs were. Garbage trucks and street sweepers worked daily to keep our neighborhood spotless.

Rue Saint Saveur

As someone who designs "user experiences", it was hard not to notice how this attention to detail made ordinary experiences more pleasurable. Since getting back from Paris, I've been taking extra time to focus on details, from the look of buttons to the number of clicks it takes to get something done. Perhaps I can infuse a bit of joie de vivre into the relatively mundane experience of time and expense tracking.