Delight Is In The Unexpected

The feeling of “new” enveloped me when I first arrived in Paris. The people, culture and the climate were vastly different from what I’ve experienced before.

I explored the city, tried their food, and take in their culture. I was fortunate enough to stay in a very hospitable and obliging Parisian’s place and experience the local way of life first-hand. 

Almost every morning, I woke up to the sound of birds chirping and the gentle sun climbing steadily up into the clear blue sky. Downstairs, the freshly baked pastries and a cup of warm coffee would be ready for us. Taking in this scent and sight was delightful.

How do we define delight?

Delight is an experience. I would also add that delight is in the unexpected.

Take for example, sports. In sports, there is no promise of a victory. Even in the case of David vs Goliath, you are never assured of who’s going to win. We all love to root for the underdogs. The victory taste especially sweeter when the underdog triumphs over the hot favourite.

Delight is the way Tweetbot dismisses an image. Tapping and holding on to it, you can toss it out of your screen. It feels natural and satisfying to be able to “throw” unwanted pictures away. The first time I experienced, I was delighted to discover such intuitive action.

Delight is using Day One. The thoughtful design and the way it automates many of the passive elements like weather and location makes it such a sublime app. It reduces the friction between digital journaling. Now, all you need have to do is write.

Delight is returning to the same coffee joint you know and be served and greeted by passionate owners. Enjoying the brew, you take comfort in being recognized as a regular.

Delight is in reading Offscreen and be welcomed by the thoughtful choice of typography, tugging you to read the content. Then, you read the “behind-the-scene” story of the considered approach on the choice of font, layout and paper. Then, you appreciate the decision and understand the compromises and struggles.

Delight is writing in Moleskine. Watching the pen glide across the alluring paper and the ink so delicately absorbed, it makes me want to write, doodle and just put my signature in the notebook.

Shawn Blanc said delight is in the details. The little things matter. Not settling for good enough and strive for excellence by sweating the details.

I would like to define delight as unexpected moment of positive experience. While we slightly differ on our definition, the baseline is that great products and services are all delightful to use. 

Details can sometimes be hidden in unexpected places. They are overlooked for more prominent and obvious features. But, they are equally important in creating delight in user experience. 

Can you still experience delight doing the same thing again and again? Will delight diminish over time? 

Well, I’m still happily and joyfully tossing pictures out in Tweetbot. Likewise, it still feels great writing and revisiting past entries in Day One.