Final Textbook Journal

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Submit a paper of about 5-10 single-spaced pages containing your textbook journal. This should be a compilation and summary of the notes you kept in your journal about the textbook chapters during the quarter.

Start your journal with an abstract, introduction or executive summary that provides an overview of what you have to say about the textbook. Conclude your journal with a critical evaluation of the textbook and how it supported the course.

Place a title, your name and the date at the top of your paper. Number the pages. Save your paper with a file name of your last name and "_journal" (e.g., stahl_journal.doc). Submit your Word document as an attachment to an email to:

Email your paper by midnight of the due date. Grades will be substantially reduced for late papers.


Comments on journals

The journals were generally well done. They show a variety of approaches, reflecting diverse interests and concerns. I would like to post them here so you can read each other's journal:
One of the journals is displayed below. It summarizes each chapter.

Week One

  • Chapter 1: What is interaction design

Interaction design is the integration of the user experience and user feedback in the design of products and things. This involves users thoughout the design process to ensure the product is usable. Incorporated in this design is understanding how people do things, how they percieve their world and how they interact with their world.

  • Chapter 2: Understanding and conceptualizing interaction

Understanding the problem space is the core of conceptualizing interaction. One must ascertain and articulate this space and this is best done as a collaborative team effort. That is team members may all have different perspectives of the problem space and this will lead to further discourse and form the basis for conceptualizing the design space as the next phase of formalizing and understanding the conceptual interaction.

Week Two

  • Chapter 3: Understanding users

Cognition is what goes on in our heads in everday activities. How humans perceive and react to stimulus in their enviroment. Attention is the process of selecting points to concentrate on . Our goals are what if we know exactly what we want and match them to the information at hand. Memory and presentation of design. What we can input into our heads at a single time 7 +- 2 chunks of data. Design implecations of memory and learning are important aspects of understanding the users. Creating cognitive models and frameworks to make learning and actions easier for user. Including cognitive off loading, taking notes, etc.

  • Chapter 4: Designing for collaboration and communication

Social mechanisms in communication and collaboration. Fundamental aspect of everyday life, being social. We continually update each other about news, changes,and developments on a given project, action, person, or event. Diverse information that is circulated in different social circles. Use of coordinating mechanisms to allow people to work and interact together. The use of awareness mechanisms to find out what is happening adn what others are doing. Talking is a basic mechanism of communication. Developing collaborative technologies to support conversation. Social networking types of technology chat rooms, email, video and .

Week Three

  • Chapter 5: Affective aspects

Affection aspects relates to the generation of an emotional response. People are happy the smile, sad they frown, etc. The idea is that computers should be designed to respond the way human do and with the same sort of affect. This is a new area of artificial intelligence that allows this type of interaction between user and interface. Frustrating interfaces and how to deal with issues of knowledge and use. Microsoft's Clippy as a way to take a negative and make a person respond better to a frustrating situation with MS help. Anthromophism and design. Making things act and look human.

  • Chapter 6: Interfaces and interactions

The range of interfaces that can be designed for different user experiences. Developments within interaction design and the issues. The many opportunities and challenges that lie ahead for interface developers. Pointers to specific design. Abstract vs realistic, menu selections vs free form text, human vs non humanlike. The types of interfaces will dictate the users experience with any system. Whether the interface is intuitive or difficult to use will impact the user and the quality of the information that is entered.

  • Chapter 7: Data gathering

Data gathering sessions need to be planned carefully. There are four issues for gathering data are goal setting, relationship between the data collector and the data provider, triangulation and pilot studies. Goal must be expressed more or less formally, make sure there is a clear professional relationship between the data collector and provider, use more than one data approach on the same set of data, and a small scale trial run. Data recording can be taking notes, notes plus a still camera, audio plus a still camera, video. The forms of data gathering can be from unstructured, structured, semi structured interviews, focus groups, and other types of interviews. Questionares can be used,observation, ethnography.diaries and online questionares can all be used to gather data.

Week Four

  • Chapter 8: Data analysis, interpretation and presentation

The kind of analysis that can be performed on a set of data will be influenced by the goals identified at the outset and the data actually gathered. You may take a qualitative analysis approach or a quantitative analysis approach or a combination of the two. The last affords the ability to support triangulation and provides flexibility. Questionares: closed questions analyzed quantitatively whereas open questions would tend to be analysed qualititively Observation: Recording both video and audio, notes, photographs processing for patterns and themes in the data Simple quantitative analysis average, percentage, mean etc Spreadsheet Excel for numerical manipulations of data. Graphs Simple qualitative analysis Identifying recurring patterns or themes Categorizing data important to reproduce results Look for critical incidents in design Tools to support data analysis, SPSS Statistical Package for the Social Sciences, N6 for anaysis of textual data Using theoretical frameworks, Grounded theory (theory derived is grounded in the data) Open coding, axial coding, and selective coding of data. Distributed cognition, distributed nature of cognition across individuals, artifacts and internal and external representations. Activity Theory practical activity in the world

  • Chapter 9: The process of interaction design

Design is a practical and creative activity,the ultimate intent of whci si to develop a product that helps its users achieve their goals.Interaction design support people to communicate and interact in their everyday lives.Underlying principle is user centered design, lifecycle model. 1. Make a list of user experience and usability goals for the system 2. Outline the initial screen or two, show main funcitonality and general look and feel 3. Did you have any artifacts or experience to base a design upon. Document the process of the design. Three fundamentals of all design, understand the requirements, produce a design that satisfys the requirements, and evaluate the design. "The best way to get a good idea is to get lots of ideas!" Value of prototyping and involving users in interactive design. Expectation management a process of making sure the users view and expectations are realistic. Adequate and timely training is another technique for managing expectations, pre realease training, hands on more receptive when software emerges. Three principles to a useful and easy to use computer system. 1. Early focus on users and tasks, first understand the who, observe doing regular tasks and normal routines 2. Emperirical measurement. Reaction and performance of intended users and gourps. 3. Iterative design. Design and development are iterative through cycles of design, text, measure, and redesign. Central to user centered approach. Four basics of Iterative design. 1. Indentify needs and establish the user experience 2. Develop alternative designs that satisfy the requirements 3. Build prototypes for testing and further design. 4. Evaluate what has been built and redesign if necessary. Who are the users? What do we mean by needs? How do you generate alternative designs? How do you choose among alternatives? Lifecycle design is a rough or simplified model of reality, intended as an abstraction. Microsoft design of software, planning stage, development stage and the Stabilization stage Other types of lifecycle models are the waterfall model, and the spiral lifecycle model (RAD) Rapid Applications Development. DSDM(Dynamic Systems Development Method) outgrowth of the RAD system. Then Agile development method, Lifecycle models in HCI, Star Lifecycle model - Large projects in industry. Usability engineering lifecycle. three phases, requirements, design/testing/development and installation. ISO 13407 HCI for interactive involvement by users 2.appropriate allocation between users snd technology. 3. the iteration of design solutions 4. multi disciplinary design byt teams.

Week Five

  • Chapter 10: Identifying needs and establishing requirements

An interaction design project may aim to replace or update and established system, or it may aim to develop a completely new system. There may be an initial set of requirements or not, whatever the aim of the project, the users needs, requirements, aspirations, and expectations must be discussed, refined, clarified and re-scoped. This requires understanding of the users and their capabilities, their current tasks and goals, conditions products will be used under, current tasks and goals, and constraints on the products performance. Two aims of requirements activities, understand as much as possible about the users, their work, and the context of that work, to produce from needs analysis a set of stable requirements based upon the analysis of those user needs. Identifying needs and establishing requirements is in itself an iterative activity. Importance of getting it right is based in this thought, fixing a software problem after delivery is often 100 times more expensive than finding and fixing it during the requirements and design phase. Aim of requirements is to develop a statement about how a product and what it should do and how it should perform. This is derived from data gathering, analysis, and interpretation activities that has been established with a strong understanding of the users needs. Requirements come in many forms and different levels of abstraction. In software engineering requirements are traditionally been identified: functional requirements and non-functional requirements. Interaction design involves the understanding of functionality and the constraints under which the product must operate and be developed. Functional requirements capture what a product should do. Data requirements, enviromental both physical and social enviroment such as collaboration and coordination, then organizational enviroment and finally the technical enviroment. User characteristics capture the key attributes of the intended user group. Different user abilities will require different user profiles to allow for variations in education, nationality, preferences, physical and mental disabilities. Personas represent a common user profile. Usability goals and user experience goals must be captured to help establish functional requirements. Primary requirement categories, functional, data, user characteristics, usability goal and user experience goal, along with the iterative process aspects of interaction design. Data gathering is to collect sufficient , relevant , and appropriate data so that a set of stable requirements can be produced.Intervies, focus groups, role playing, questionares, direct obseration, indirect observation, studying documentation, researchng simialr products, coceptual inquirey all all forms of data gathering techniques. It is important to identify the stakeholders needs, involve the stakeholder groups,support data gatehring. Once the data is gathered it will need to be interpreted, analysed and a presentation of the data discussed. To create a top of the line product you will need a wide range of disciplines, dont ban silly stuff, use catalysts, keep records, sharpen the focus through brainstorming, and warm up exercises in the brainstorming exercices. Task descriptions or business scenarios, these informal narrative description is useful in development of use cases. Use cases focus on user goals but emphasis in on a user-system interaction rather than the users tasks itself. Heirachical task analysis is a higher lever analysis of the data.

  • Chapter 11: Design, prototyping, and construction

Design activities begin once some requirements have been established. THe design emerges iteratively through repeated design-evaluation-redesign cycles. Two types of design, conceptual and physical. Conceptual design is concerned with developing a conceptual model that captures what the product will do and how it will behave. While the physical model is concerned with details of design such as schree and menu structures, icons,and graphics. For users to evaluate the design of an interactive product effectively, designers must produce and interactive version of their idea. In the early stages of development these ineteactive versions may be made of paper or cardboard. There are two distincitive versions of an idea, starting from scratch and one where you are modifying an existing product. This is a process called prototyping and construction of a design. Prototype is a scale model or a basic version of a product. This can be anything from a mockup to a full version. Prototyping is a useful aid when discussing ideas with stakeholders. These encourage reflection in design. Low fidelity prototyping does not look much like the finished product. Sketching is a form of low fidelity prototyping.High Fidelity prototyping uses materials that would be expected in the final product. Protyping involves compromise, the intent is to develop something quickly. When the design has gone through the iteration process long enough and designers fell confident that it fits the requirements we move to the implementation phase of the design process.With an eye on the users and their context, discuss with stakeholders, use low fidelity prototyping and iterate, iterate, iterate. We move to develop the initial conceptual model. Four different interaction types instructing, conversing, manipulating, and exploring. The best suited type is dependent on the design domain. Most use a combination of different types of interaction. Design looks at interface types, WIMP/GUI, shareable interface,tangible interface,advanced graphical interface. Then expand the conceptual model to include what does it perform,how functions relate then on to physical design getting concrete. Using scenarios are used extensively througout the design process of many products. Also prototypes are used and storyboards from scenarios developed to expand on the user from card based prototyping on to physical combined with tools to support the design activities.

Week Six

  • Chapter 12: Introducting evaluation

Evaluation is integral to the design process by collecting information about users or potential users experiences with a prototype, computer system, sub-system. This is considered a design artifact and affords the designer input of the useablity of their design. There is a designer tunnel vision when it comes to useability, they may believe if they and the other designers can use the prototype than everyone will find it attractive as well. This does not take into account the individual characteristics of the users. There are three main evaluation approaches or methods. Why evlaluate. -- This is needed to check that users can use a product and that they like it. What to evaluate -- The evaluation process is depend on the types of software or design they are evaluating. Where to evaluate -- Some things are best evaluated in a lab or by direct observation in the field under real life conditions. When to evalutate -- At what stage in development the eval takes place depends on the type of the product itself. Once requirements have been set then design artifacts can be used such as sketches, prototypes, etc. These can be evaluated and then sent back to design for redesign and then reevaluation to begin the iterative cycle in the design stage. If the evaluation is done during the design stage it is called "formative evaluation".

Languages of evaluation

  • Controlled Experiment: study in a laboratory
  • Field Study : Study done in natural enviroment
  • Formative evaluation: evaluation during design phase
  • Heuristic evalutation: Evaluation of typical users is applied
  • Predictive evaluation: theoretical based models are used to predict performance
  • Summative evaluation: evaluation when design is complete
  • usability laboratory: Lab for usability studies
  • user studies: Evaluation using users directly
  • Usability study: an evaluation that is performed to examine the usability of design or system
  • usability testing: an evaluation approach to evaluation that involves measuring users performance
  • user testing: evaluation approach where users are asked to perform certain tasks using prototype of systems

Evaluation approaches and methods. 1. Usability testing -- the dominant evaluation approach in the 1980's and still remains important to insure consistency in navigation structure, use of terms, how the system responds to the user. Measuring typical users performance. Changes generated from the usability testing that impact design is called "usability engineering".

  • Chapter 13: An evaluation framework

As design process proceeds from intial ideas through the design process and prototypes, iterative cycles of design and evaluation to ensure meeting user's needs. Deciding when and how to evaluate requires careful consideration and will be different depending on what type of product evaluated. DECIDE

  • Determine the goals.
  • Explore the questions.
  • Choose the evalutation approach and method.
  • Identify the practical issues.
  • Decide how to deal with the ethical issues.
  • Evaluate, analyze, interpret and present the data.

What are the high level goals of the evaluation? Who wants it and why? An evaluation is to help clarify the users needs. Exploring the questions,in order to make the goals operational we must first fully understand the questions that need to me answered in the evaluation process.Choosing the approach and methods that will provide the most appropriate results depending on the product evaluated. Identify the practical issues. Users make the key aspect of the evaluation. Facilities and equipment that is needed in the evaluation. Scheduling and budget constraints that must be considered. Expertise in the process of the evaluation itself. Decide on how to deal with the ethical issues. There names should never be associated with the data. ACM Code of Ethics to follow regarding how to treat people in the evaluation. Finally evaluate, interpret and present the data. Reliablity of the data, Validity of the data, Biases of the data, Scope of the data, ecological validity of the data and the evaluation.

Week Seven

  • Chapter 14: Usability testing and field studies
  • Usability testing takes place mainly in a controlled enviroment. Field studies examines how a product is used in the natural home enviroment of the product. The performance of users interacting with a product is measure for set tasks in a usability study. The systems effectiveness to be assessed and usablility problems to ve indentified.Usability testing varies in terms of the amount of control over the study. At one end are experiments typically carreid out in a lab setting. At the other end are more opportunisitic studies that investigate a suset of usability and user experience goals.
  • Recently it has become more common for field studies to be conducted in natural enviroments, this is especially so with the development of new technologies such as mobile devices. Observations, diaries, and interviews are commonly used methods. Importantly they take place in the setting where the product is to be used.
  • Usability testings is an approach that emphasizes the property of being usable. It is the product being tested not the user. Data collection uses a variety of techniques. Time and number are the two main measures. Time it takes for a user to complete a task, find a website, and the number of errors that participants make. Data gathering requires a specific goal. Usability test require setting goals and questions to be answered. Selection of participants. Development of the tasks to be performed. The test procedure. data collection. data anlysis.
  • Field studies are typically conducted to find out how a product or prototype is adopted and used by people in their working and everyday lives. Such settings are very different than the controlled enviroment of the usability studies. The studies can range in time from a few minutes to several months or even years. Data is collected primarily by observing and interviewing people, collecting video, audio and field notes. In addition many participants are asked to fill out paper based or electronic diaries.
  • User testing is a central component of usability testing. It also can include observation, user satification questionares, and interviews
  • Field studies are carried out to discover how people interact with technology in the real world.
  • Testing is commonly done in controlled lab like conditions, in contrast to field studies that focus on how the product is used in a working or everyday context.
  • Usability-In-A-Box and remote testing stsytems have been devloped that are more affordable than usability labs and also more portable, making them suitable for field use and remote evaluation.
  • Experiments aim to test a hypothesis by manipulating certain variables while keeping others constant
  • The experimenter controls independent variables in order to measure dependent variables.

Week Eight

  • Chapter 15: Analytical evaluation
  • All evaluation methods in the book have involved some level of interaction with or direct observation of users. The other approach is analytical evaluation, where users are not directly involved. There are various inspection methods and predictive models. The inspection methods include expert role-playing the users for whom the device is designed, analyzing parts of an interface, and identifying potential useability problems by using a set of guidelines.
  • Predictive models analyze the various physical and mental operations needed to perform tasks at the interface and then operationalizing them to acquire metrics of the use. Then predict the time it takes a user to carry out the same task using different interfaces. Two of the most used models are GOMS and Fitt's law.
  • Inspections are used to evaluate fully working systems such as websites whereas predictive modeling techniques are used more for testing specific aspects of the interface such as layout of keys or menu options. Analytic evaluation is fast and does not involve users in the testing.
  • Heuristic evalutaions closely resembles the high level design principles of making designs consistent, reducing memory load, and using terms users understand. These include:
  • Visiblity of system status
  • Match between system and the real world
  • Users control and freedom
  • Consistency and standards
  • Error prevention
  • Recogntion rather than recall
  • Flexibility and efficiency of use
  • Aesthetic and minimalistic design
  • Help users recognize, diagnose, and recover from errors
  • Help and documentation
  • Doing heuristic evaluation stages.

1)Briefing session - experts are told what to do 2)evaluation period - each expert spends 1 -2 hours inspecting the product or interface 3)Debriefing session - when the experts come together to discuss their findings.

  • Walkthroughs

1)Cognitive Walkthroughs Alternative to heuristic evaluations made up of Cognitive Walkthroughs of simulation of a users problem-solving at each step in the human-computer dialogue ~Identify the characteristics of typical user and develop sample tasks to focus on the aspects of the design to be evaluated. ~Designer and one or more expect evaluator come together to do the analysis ~The evaluation walk through the action sequences for each task to ask the following questions. Will the correct action be sufficiently evident to the user? Will the user notice that the correct action is available? Will the user associate and interpret the response from the action correctly? Then a running record is kept and recorded. Notes about side issues and design changes are made. A summary of the results compiled. Design is then revised to fix the problems presented.

  • 2) Pluralistic Walkthroughs

Detailed evaluation of each step the user takes to undertake a task. Look at each step taken int he process

  • Predictive Models
  • GOMS Goals - The particular state the user wants to achieve, Operators - the cognitive processes and physical actions that need to be performed in order to attain the goal, Methods - Learned procedures for accomplishing the goals and Selection rules - to select which method to select when there is more than one available at a given stage of the task.
  • Keystroke level model - This model provides actual numberical predictions of user performance. Task are time it takes to perform them when using different strategy.
  • Fitt's Law - predicts the time it takes to reach a target using a pointing device. In a nutshell the bigger the target the easier and quicker it is to reach it. Big button interfaces are easier to use than interfaces that present lots of tiny buttons.

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