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  • Human Computer InteractionAn Introduction

  • Human-Computer Interaction "Human-computer interaction (HCI) is the study of theinteraction between people, computers and tasks. It is principally concerned with understanding how people and computers can interactively carry out tasks, and how such interactive systems are designed."

    Peter Johnson (1992)

    "... even the hugest telescope has to have an eye-piece no larger than the human eye." Ludwig Wittgenstein

  • HCI What is it all about?userstaskssoftware/hardwareenvironment?

  • Pandora's Box?linguistics

  • What is the problem?Have you ever bumped into a door because you pulled instead of pushed?Have you ever switched the wrong lights on or off?Have you ever made a mistake in programming your video recorder?Have you ever taken hours to figure out to do exactly what you want with a certain computer program?Have you ever left a web page because you could not find what you were looking for?The frustrations of everyday life

  • What is a 'User Interface'?It is the interface between the user and the computer...

    ... but it is more than just simple input and output.

    We must consider COGNITIVE ASPECTS of human ...

    ... and of course, everybody is different ...

    We must accept cognitive diversity, even though it makes the user interface design process more difficult!!

  • Cognition The interpretation of information from the outside world that is received through the senses.Perception of objects and events and interpretation of them.The wrong interpretation could be costly, inefficient, unpleasant, dangerous, and even fatalExample?

  • Goals of interaction designDevelop usable productsUsability means easy to learn, effective to use and provide an enjoyable experienceInvolve users in the design process

  • What to design?Need to take into accountWho the users areWhat activities are being carried outWhere the interaction is taking place

    Need to optimize the interactions users have with a productSuch that they match the users activities and needs

  • for HumanComputer Interactionunderstand your materials

    understand computerslimitations, capacities, tools, platformsunderstand peoplepsychological, social aspectshuman errorand their interaction

  • To err is humanaccident reports ..aircrash, industrial accident, hospital mistakeenquiry blames human errorbut concrete lintel breaks because too much weightblame lintel error ? no design error we know how concrete behaves under stresshuman error is normalwe know how users behave under stressso design for it!treat the user at least as well as physical materials!

  • Logical or ambiguous design?Where do you plug the mouse?

    Where do you plug the keyboard?

    top or bottom connector?

    Do the colour coded icons help?

    From: www.baddesigns.com

  • How to design them more logicallyA provides direct adjacent mapping between icon and connector

    B provides colour coding to associate the connectors with the labels

    From: www.baddesigns.com

  • Task 2: (10 min)Design a stove top with four rings and four controls, one for each ring. You are not allowed to use any labelling to indicate which knob applies to which ring.

  • Which controls go with which rings (burners)?


  • Why is this a better design?

  • Discuss:

  • Mapping The relationship between two things.e.g. Turn steering wheel right, car turns right

    Why is this a poor mapping of control buttons?

  • Task: Group work (15 min)Design an interface for a small programme that converts between currencies.

    Draw a design for the input / output screen.

    The system can accept input by using a mouse, other pointing device or touch screen NOT by using a keyboard.

    The programme must be able convert between BP, US dollars, Au Dollars , euros and Yen.

    Note: You dont have to actually carry out the calculations (just pretend)www.baddesigns.com

  • Your taskLook at the following slide show of HCI devices. Form groups: Design a new interface for a common device: ensure you have adhered to some of the laws in the quiz belowProduce a quick slide show to present your work and reasoning to the class



    A good designer should considerComputer Science / engineering:faster machines, faster systems, means of building better interfacesArt:aesthetic appealErgonomics:equipment design, human capabilitiesSociology: groupware - mutual impact of computer systems on work and vice versa, computer systems for group tasks, Psychology: understanding and modelling the userLinguistics: language commandsPhilosophy: creating consistencyDesign:user interface layoutAI: modelling the user and help facilitiesAnthropology: User body shapePhysiology: physical capabilities

    Can you think of any frustrating use of design?Steering wheel in the way of speedometer.Cash machines mapping of buttons and labelsUsableProductEffectiveEnjoyableInvolveProcessUser

    Take into accountActivityCarry outTake placeOptimizeMatchNeed

    AmbiguousPlug inConnector


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