Jul 15, 2022

Recently, I was delighted to see the cover of the children’s book, Don’t Push the Button! I bought it to read to my grandchildren. Later, I learned that I was one of more than a million people who also bought this book, many of whom must have judged it favorably by its cover. 

 
Now reflecting on my purchase, the gray box on the cover looks like a pretty good user interface in concept. Pure simplicity. One button to press or, as the book title suggests, not to press. Its red color makes the button that much more tempting. 
 
 
The book plays on human curiosity, and particularly that of a youngster. What’s going to happen if I press that button? Will it sound an alarm, open a trap door, start an engine, turn off the lights, or do something else? This is the appeal of the book—not knowing the consequence of a simple action but eager to know it. It’s simple psychology. Action followed by reaction. Anticipation followed by discovery.