Over the past two decades, there has been an enormous amount of research on how our mind functions. The synthesis of these studies, most of which are not focused on architecture and the environment per se, leads to the inevitable conclusion that our emotions, thoughts, actions, interactions with others, health, and ultimately our lives are largely determined by what surrounds us.
Thanks to the new system of views that is developing at the intersection of different disciplines and fields of science, we now know that we are influenced by design, even if we are not aware of this influence.
All that surrounds us in everyday life – cities, towns, streets, squares, parks, bridges, houses, interiors of apartments, cafes, schools, hospitals, theaters, stores, etc. – is created by man. Our environment is an artificial environment.
“Artificial” in the sense that it is not created by nature, but by man. The purpose of its creation is to ensure our life activity. Its design is the decisions made by specific people. In this artificial environment, we are almost always.
What feelings it causes at us? How we perceive it? And how it can influence us? In most cases at household level we estimate design of that surrounds us, by narrow concepts: badly – well, it is pleasant – it is not pleasant, beautifully – tastelessly, practically – impractical, comfortably – uncomfortably etc.
We have the illusion that the choice we make, whether it is a space assessment or just a situation in life, is fully understood.
From the point of view of modern research, it is a mistake.
In reality, people are constantly exposed, “bombarded” by information from an artificial environment. Some of this information is “read” consciously, others unconsciously. Information that we don’t recognize “stimulates unplanned thoughts, feelings of unplanned emotions and forces us to make semi-conscious choices along with a template set of behavioral patterns,” writes Sarah Williams Goldhagen, a Harvard University Graduate School of Design professor and author of “Welcome to Your World”.
Much of what one thinks about and how one thinks about is the result of the functioning of his body, which interacts with the environment. A new look at the cognitive process, which takes into account the mind-body-environment triad, leads to the conclusion that the artificial environment and its design have a much greater impact on the human being than expected.
Our perception of the artificial environment is to some extent blind: we do not notice how our brain processes information about the place where we live; we do not know how this information integrates into our experience, how it affects our emotions and our choices.
Human interaction with the artificial environment has many levels; one of these levels is how we store our knowledge. When we do something – whether it’s a conversation with friends, writing this text, or visiting a theater – we feel that our thoughts are completely independent of where we are. But when we want to remember something, we involuntarily have an element of space where these events took place.
What surrounds us completely penetrates and intertwines with the process of our knowledge.
A new view of the process of human learning has appeared and continues to develop as a result of various studies in neurobiology, cognitive linguistics, phenomenology, neuropsychology, environmental psychology, social history, environmental psychology.
Studies in cognitive neurobiology and cognitive neuropsychology show that knowledge can be both conscious and unconscious. In these studies, different visual design techniques were taken into account. You can do this analysis yourself with free iPhone mockups.
The conscious part of the process of cognition makes us believe that we feel and think consciously and deliberately. The illusion that we can control what we think about and how we think makes our lives easier. After all, if the process of cognition were 100% conscious, we would “drown” in the need to solve a huge number of simple and complex tasks. The conscious part of the cognitive process is limited and intended only for the most important tasks.