In a recent essay, Don Norman bitches about the tendency among designers and researchers to call the people who are the subject of their efforts anything but, well, “people.”
And I think he has a point — words do matter. Though I think he overstates the point — those other labels (well, except for “consumer,” which I’d like to see banned) have use as well.
Still, in a rant that features the phrase “we design for people,” why on earth would Don not acknowledge Henry Dreyfuss’ watershed book, Designing for People? (There’s also the brilliantly titled “Housing as if People Mattered”).