January 20, 2021

Why are cabs not designed designedly?

Whenever I board a cab I end up observing cab drivers and car.

In India, the cab market is growing and every automobile company is in the race to attract cab buyers. Thanks to the cab aggregators and economic growth.

According to the drivers, all automobile companies generally play around space, low cost of ownership, mileage, service network etc. Automobile companies claim that their car is perfect for cab purpose. Just to make it look like a cab sometimes they reduced the features and opened for cab market considering buys are generally price-conscious. The black bumper is a great example here.

The reality is when cars failed to attract personal buyers they opened for cab market. e.g are Indica, Logan/Verito, Etios etc. There are few exceptions here 🙂

Most of the time I have seen drivers carrying 2 phones. One on the mobile holder and one will be lying the seat. Water bottle, diary, parking slips, charging cables etc etc. Overall that driver area always looked messy to me. I feel pity for drivers. Whenever I asked they said, “Kya karen sir, kuch nahi kar sakte” (What to do sir, can’t do anything).

A few months back I took a cab and driver wanted to switch off AC because he wasn’t feeling well. As a good human being, I asked him to turn it off. Why can’t passengers have a separate AC?

Safety is another concern, why cab need child lock?
In some cabs, I have seen a panic button. I think it should come as a default in all cabs and should go to the near PCR, police station or may be to a centralized system.

Privacy? Well sorry no privacy. Why can’t there be a partition between the driver and passenger? Like yellow cabs in NewYork?

In-cab industry, there are already few benchmark taxis around the world. TX4 is the perfect example. But in India and Singapore, I see none of the automobile companies tried to understand the entire ecosystem of the driver and passenger, design based on both users needs.

None of the cars are designed for cab purposes in India.

I hope one day our automobile companies will understand and design one keeping in mind the purpose 🙂

April 3, 2020

My favourite books on Life, Design & Productivity

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I’m an avid reader. I didn’t use to, but over the last couple of years, I made an effort to change, and I’m happy that I’ve succeeded. One of the best decisions I made was buying a Kindle because now I don’t have to carry books, and it gives me the freedom to switch anytime.

The majority of books I read are non-fiction and fiction is something I’m still trying to pick up. Most of the books are around design or phycology. Psychology is something I like reading a lot, and I feel it helps me a lot to understand the user’s side.

Here are some of my favourite picks. Honestly, the list is quite long but below are the ones I read twice or even more often. My all-time favourite reads. I hope you find one or two and add them to your library.

Emotional Design: Why We Love (or Hate) Everyday Things

I love Norman’s view, and his books are always something special to me. This book is one of my all-time favourites. I have read it a couple of times, and whenever I’m confused about what to read, I pick this book and read any chapter. The chapter on “three levels of behavioural design: visceral, behavioural, and reflective” is at the core of this book. If you are interested in an “emotional design”, you must read this book. Read some of Norman’s amusing stories about objects that he owns.

About Face 3: The Essentials of Interaction Design

This book is pretty much the bible of interaction design. It covers almost everything about interaction design. Very comprehensive and well-presented. It is widely considered one of the most important books ever written about Interaction Design. Alan Cooper pioneered vital concepts and its a must-read if you design digital products/applications.

PS: This book cover you see above is just a little artwork I did because I couldn’t find a high-quality image. This not the original cover of this book.

Creativity, Inc

It’s the story of Pixar and its founders and how they managed to establish Pixar as a thriving business. This book has lots of useful tips on how to let employees express themselves creatively and give constructive feedback. If you are into management its, a must-read. Especially I liked the management lessons combined with the inner workings of Pixar, and it’s founding story.

Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products

If you’re in the product, I’ll highly recommend this book. This book is a fantastic introduction to behavioural product psychology. If you ever wondered what makes people come back to digital products like Facebook, Instagram or games like World of Warcraft or PubG this books has the answer. A must-read to understand the psychology behind what drives our behaviour in a world where there are so many services competing for our attention.

Jony Ive: The Genius Behind Apple’s Greatest Products

Jony Ive, a British designer and a great man behind the design of most of the Apple products. It’s not exactly a bible of Jony but yes if you would like to know about his before Apple days and during Apple days, if you would like to know stories about apple products, It’s a must-read.

There are so many books which I loved. Honestly, the list is pretty long but these are my top picks. Enjoy and keep reading!