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Foundations of UX: Logic and Content looks at how designers, developers, and content creators can use the ancient art of logic and reasoning to improve user experiences and facilitate communication. Morten Rand-Hendriksen looks at the principles of logic, how computer logic and human logic differ, and how these differences can be used to improve communication.
The core idea of logic is to create a system in which communication is clear, precise, and unambiguous, which is (or at least should be) the goal of any website or other communication.
Whenever we say anything, we're making statements. But have you ever really thought about what a statement is? Statements are the fundamental building blocks of communication and of logic. A statement, at its core, is the very essence of communication. So what is a statement, really? By definition, a statement is a definite or clear expression of something in speech or writing or an official account of facts, views, or plans, especially one for release to the media.
In other words, a statement is a description of, or a declaration about something. In logic, we have a firmer definition of a statement. Being, a meaningful declarative sentence that is either true or false, or that which a true or false declarative sentence asserts. When we communicate, we usually make statements about objects or ideas. This can be done by identifying the object, that's the tree.
Qualifying the object. The tree has green leaves. Categorizing or grouping the object. This tree is a maple. Applying a value to the object. This tree is beautiful. Or applying an action to, or in relation to the object. I am taking a picture of the tree. Judging the value of these statements, whether they are valid and sound, or factual, requires a mix of logic, factual knowledge, and common sense.
Let me give you two statements. Both are logically valid, but only one is sound. This dessert is a gluten free cupcake. The moon is a large white cheese. The truth and soundness of a statement, hinges on the actual facts about the subject. Therefore, the only way to truly judge the soundness, or truth of a statement, is to verify the facts. In the first case, the object I'm referring to is a dessert. It is gluten free, and it is a cupcake.
And thus, the statement is true. In the second case, while the object referred to is the moon and the moon can be said to be white, it is not made of cheese. The statement is false. The underlying logical structure of these statements allow us to easily judge their soundess. By making clear, declarative statements where each element can be tried and tested. We make it easy for the recipient of our communication to know whether what we are saying is true or false. And as we'll see later in this course, knowing how to structure valid statements becomes vital when working with computer logic.
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