Project 1 is due in class on M 20 Mar
The goals of this project are to provide you with an overview of the field, by asking you:
Rationale: HCI professionals are required to know about interface design requirements. They should be able to discover, evaluate and use relevant HCI research, and be able to keep current with that work. They should also be able to evaluate and critique other interfaces, as well as their own, as part of the design process. They should be able to learn from interface users about the quality of interfaces. In addition, an HCI professional must know what new devices and techniques are being proposed in the field. All these skills and this knowledge allows them to design and produce good interfaces that demonstrate HCI principles.
The task is to carefully study this old WPI home page, find all the design decisions that have been made, and try to infer why all those decisions were made that way. This leads you to infer the Requirements from the Design: the opposite of the normal design process. What you are doing is called "Reverse Engineering", as engineering usually proceeds from requirements to design.
Hints: When the web site was developed, they needed to create information that would help them design the site. This includes information about 'audience', 'purpose', 'objectives', and 'domain'. That's one way to view the web page in order to make inferences about the requirements. It is also useful to reverse-engineer the design by considering the syntax and semantics of every item, as well as item grouping on the page, and the relationships between groups. You already saw all these ideas in the first class.
1.2 Hand In:
Hand in a clear, structured (i.e., not an essay), printed (i.e., on paper) explanation of what you think the Requirements were for the old WPI web page. Explain why they were chosen as the Requirements, and what evidence made you think that. Also describe all of the main interface design decisions. Note that we are not asking you for any sort of evaluation. Part 1 can be up to 5 printed pages.
Some published articles evaluate or record successful use of HCI techniques on real products: in this case for user interface evaluation. The paper you will study is a classic cost-benefit analysis of three usability analysis techniques. It refers to seminal HCI research that you should know about.
Your task is to read:
(also at web.cs.wpi.edu/~dcb/courses/CS3041/p214-nielsen.pdf)
2.2 Hand in:
Hand in printed answers to all of the following questions. Keep answers precise, clear, and brief. Make sure you explain, as just answering "yes" or "no" isn't adequate. What you hand in for this part (part 2) of project 1 should be no more than 2 printed pages.
Your task is to do a small, informal usability study with two users. Observe their actions and use their feedback to provide a critical evaluation of their experiences using the current WPI web interface. Make sure you know the interface well yourself before starting this study!
Select your users to gain maximum usability information. Try to select people who have little or no experience with the WPI interface. Study each user in a separate session, treating them in the same way as much as possible. Although this is difficult, prefer people who are not in, or have not taken, this class. Please do not use subjects who have already done this task for another classmate.
The goal of the experiment is to discover whether the answers to some basic questions are easy to find.
The three questions you must use are:
Work with one subject at a time. Read them the instructions first. You will ask each subject those three questions. Read them a question, and give it to them on paper, then let them work to find the answer at the web site for no more than four minutes before stopping them. Start each subject at the WPI Home page for each question. Repeat the process until all questions have been used. It is possible that they may not find answers to the questions.
The instructions that you should read them, and provide to them on paper, are given directly below.
You must not guide them or answer any questions about the web page itself. Make notes along the way about what they did and said. Afterwards, ask them the usability questions given below.
The usability questions you ask each of them are:
3.2 Hand in:
Summarize the results of the usability study by handing in printed answers to all of the following questions. Keep answers precise, clear, and brief. What you hand in for this part (part 3) should be no more than 4 printed pages.
There is a lot of current research on new techniques for interaction. Many are introduced without being fully evaluated, and many have their evaluations kept company confidential. The issues include physical and cognitive load/difficulty, including time to complete a task, error rate, and mental or physical stress.
Your task is to read the paper:
4.2 Hand in:
Hand in a printed version of:
dcb at cs wpi edu / Wed Mar 8 13:46:15 EST 2017