Usability vs comfort

I just had a look at the paper «Comfort in Using Hand Tools» and found quite interesting the different definitions authors give for the term «Comfort»:

According to Peter Vink , Comfort is «a convenience experience by the end‐user during or just after working with the product«.

Wikipedia, on the other hand, defines Usability as a term «used to denote the ease with which people can employ a particular tool or other human-made object in order to achieve a particular goal».

To me, both of them are quite similar for several reasons:

  • They have qualitative attributes;
  • They are focused on the end-user;
  • They look for best experience.

But curiously, the paper mentioned above just outlines «Usability» once…
The only difference I see between these two concepts could be in the «touching» experience: Comfort is a bit more narrow, more related to physical objects. Usability is a wider concept, including not only physical hardware but also digital sofware.

From now on, I think I would include Confort when talking about Usability. The term sounds human, smooth and friendly…

Showing 3 comments
  • david

    it makes me laugh to think about an spanish interaction designer saying: «mira que interfaz tan confortable» or «es una interfaz muy comoda»

  • seisdeagosto

    @david 😀
    Just change «easy» for «comfort» in the wikipedian definition of usability:

    “used to denote the comfort with which people can employ a particular tool or other human-made object in order to achieve a particular goal”.

    I don´t know about you, but to me sounds better!

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