Norman door

Norman Doors drive me crazy

This door drives me crazy every time I walk into work. Every. Single. Time. Why? It’s because the design of the handle itself, its shape, its thickness, its placement, clearly says “pull”, but the sign says “Push”. It’s a Norman Door.

The basic elements of this design contradict each other.
When people encounter physical things in their environment that are human scale we instinctively, and almost instantaneously work out how we will interact with them based on the physical characteristics of the objects, and ourselves. This door handle clearly says “pull” because the vertical and horizontal bars will clearly fit into our outstretched hand and allow us to grasp and pull it.

There could be any number of reasons this design turned out this way; the real world isn’t perfect. That’s one of the reason that when I encounter good design I really appreciate it. Here’s to you, good design. Wherever you are.

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