Vink and colleagues have thoroughly studied how physical comfort is evaluated in different countries. They report that “A questionnaire was sent to participants out in nine countries (Brazil, Canada, the USA, China, Indonesia, Thailand, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands). . . . All countries score the comfort of a luxurious bed higher than a simple bed, first-class seats higher than economy class and all countries rate the comfort lower when the duration of sitting increases.
Researchers have assessed bird photos, looking for clues about preferred images and report that people prefer birds that are blue, just as they prefer blue in other contexts. Thommes and Hayn-Leichsenring share that they “collected over 20,000 photos of birds from the photo-sharing platform Instagram with their corresponding liking data. . . . The colors of the depicted bird . . . significantly affected the liking behavior of the online community, replicating and generalizing previously found human color preferences. . . .
Zhou and colleagues studied work groups’ adjacency preferences. They investigated “a large company’s spatial adjacency planning with an in-depth analysis of its formal organizational structure and collaboration network. A sample of 183 managers was surveyed regarding groups with whom they want to be spatially adjacent and groups with whom they mostly interact. . . . . The results suggest that department affiliation and collaboration relations are significantly correlated to adjacency preferences.
Rodriquez and teammates determined via a virtual-reality-based study that we prefer apparent daylighting levels to vary from time to time in viewed urban environments; their findings may be useful to people developing virtual spaces, for example. The group shares that their work “analyze[d] subjective reponses to lightness changes in outdoor views with respect to three view constructs (i.e., preference, recovery, and imageability). . .
Which light is best? Houser and colleagues report that “light is still for vision, and lighting for visibility, visual comfort and visual amenity is as important as ever. Complementing the old is new awareness and responsibility for how light and lighting influence non-visual responses in humans. Circadian, neuroendocrine and neurobehavioural responses are important for human health and should be considered on-par with visual responses. This awareness leads toward lighting design solutions with increased contrast between day and night.
Hong and teammates studied adding nature sounds to outdoor spaces. Study participants wore a mixed-reality head-mounted display and saw a hologram of either a sparrow or a fountain or a loudspeaker while hearing birdsong or a stream. The researchers determined via data collected outdoors, near an expressway, that “both natural sounds significantly reduced the PLN [perceived loudness of the traffic noise] and enhanced the OSQ [overall sound quality]. . . . Analysis on the preferred signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), i.e.
User preferences ranked
Theodorson and Scott researched lighting preferences. They report that their “research explores the human response to colored lighting with light emitting diodes (LEDs) in a space with the intent of understanding preference and affectual [emotional] response. The research was conducted through photographic appraisal of a single interior space illuminated with monochromatic and mixed colored lighting. Results indicate that. . . . When mixed color lighting is introduced, there are preferences for warm colors.”
What do we prefer to see when we look out the window at an urban area? Batool, Rutherford, and McGraw found that “participants tend to prefer the presence of people, well-maintained buildings and orderly presented colours. . . . Views containing a variety of information, with colourful patterns and differentiated facades, were preferred more than those with less information. . . . windows not affording a clear vision to the inside – that is, where further information could not be obtained about the environment behind an opening – led to reduced preference. . .
Vasquez and colleagues studied children’s (their sample was kindergarteners, 3.5 – 6.6 years old) classroom design preferences. They determined that “young children can differentiate lighting needs according to the activity performed. Visual contact with the view seen through the classroom window was important to the children, with a higher preference for natural views. . . . the children preferred the classroom with open curtains. . . . most of the children enjoyed looking out of the window, without any difference related to gender or age.