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Abstract

Since affordances provided by packaging features play a major role in facilitating user packaging interaction, it is important to integrate the concept of affordances into the packaging design process and to understand the interrelationships between packaging features and affordances. A framework is proposed for linking user requirements to packaging design features utilizing the concept of affordances. The framework is accomplished in two main steps; first, determine the affordances required to facilitate performing packaging-related tasks, and second, link these affordances to packaging features. Previous packaging usability studies were reviewed to elicit requirements in terms of affordance properties such as intuitiveness, responsiveness, and clarity of information. The elicited properties represent the affordances of purchase-ability, store-ability, open-ability, reopen/reclose-ability, handle-ability, unpack-ability, and dispose-ability. An affordance structure matrix (ASM) was built to link user requirements, represented by affordance properties, to packaging features, and to appraise the links between them. To demonstrate its functionality, the framework was applied to assessment of a food packaging design. Further, a usability study conducted with 37 users agreed with the framework outcomes. The framework systematically incorporates user requirements for affordances into the design stage, thereby allowing modifications of packaging features to improve packaging designs based on affordance measures.

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