EPFL - PxS, week 8 - conceptual design
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  • 1. EPFL, spring 2011 - week 8!conceptual design
  • 2. objectives of this lecture ➝  know the different types of models which are relevant to the HCI design process.➝  understand how ➝  models influence users interaction with the system ➝  conceptual design aims to exploit this.➝  appreciate problems with applying conceptual design approach.This lecture is based on a conceptual design lecture by Angela Sasse (UCL)
  • 3. conceptual design idea
  • 4. models, models & more muddles ➝  user s model/mental model ➝  design model/conceptual model ➝  system image ➝  user model ➝  metaphor ➝  analogy
  • 5. user s model➝  internalised model of system held by user, formed as a result of interaction with the system ➝  can also be result of directed training➝  origins: mental models research in cognitive psychology and instruction➝  Wason-task A K Car Train 2 7 Sheffield Manchester
  • 6. design model➝  representation of system which is ➝  accurate, complete,consistent !➝  held by ➝  designer of system, expert users, trainers➝  should be based on users ➝  task ➝  previousknowledge and experience ➝  perceptual and cognitive limitations
  • 7. system image➝  everything the user sees of the system or interacts with: ➝  user interface (incl. help) ➝  documentation ➝  training / marketing User Manuals Screen HELP! display Training
  • 8. Tog on conceptual design “Users will add to what is so clearly communicated on the display every past experience that they have had, relevant or not. If the interface carries any trace of ambiguity, the user will find it out and jump to the wrong conclusion. In short, the user will insist on doing everything wrong, wrong, wrong!” (Tognazzini 1992)
  • 9. problems➝  How to convert/integrate output of TA into a design model.➝  How to identify users’ existing knowledge and experience which provides a basis for a design model. ➝  How to communicate a chosen design model through the user interface in a manner which supports the construction of an appropriate users’ model. Sasse (1997)
  • 10. how useful are user s models?➝  users will construct models, whether the designer aims for this or not➝  trying to direct model-building process is worthwhile - but needs to be checked*➝  can try to cue/exploit existing models (user tasks, related systems)➝  it is often suggested that metaphors can be used for this purpose ...
  • 11. the lure of metaphors "The desktop metaphor ... is an inviting metaphor that provides easy access to the system. Once users are emerged in the ! desktop metaphor, users can adapt readily to loose connections with physical situations - the metaphor need not to be taken to its logical ! extremes." ! (Apple Human Interface Guidelines, 1987) ! But !   !
  • 12. metaphor➝  existing model from a different domain which has similar structure to intended user s model ➝  exploit user s existing knowledge and experience to construct appropriate user s model➝  facilitate access and encourage exploration
  • 13. metaphor evaluation heuristicsErikson in Baecker (1995) book gives a list of heuristics for evaluating metaphors:➝  1. how much structure does metaphor provide?➝  2. how much of the structure is relevant to problem?➝  3. is the metaphor easy to represent?➝  4. will intended users understand the metaphor?➝  5. can it be extended?
  • 14. evaluating metaphors Those features provided Those features provided by by the system and the system and not supported by the supported by the metaphor metaphor (S+M+) (S+M-) Features implied by the Features not implied by the metaphor but not metaphor and not supported by the system supported by the system (S-M+) (S-M-) conceptual baggage
  • 15. evaluating metaphors conceptual baggage
  • 16. implementing metaphors➝  maintain compatibility with regard to: ➝  structure ➝  visualclues ➝  language➝  pay special attention to: ➝  conceptual baggage ➝  functionality which exceeds metaphor
  • 17. example: burglar alarm ➝  problem ➝  alarmstoo difficult to use; users don’t arm them ➝  occupied buildings are strongest deterrent ➝  analogy - car central locking ➝  design model: central locking plus home aware ➝  system image ➝  simple: how to alarm ➝  friendly (non-technical)
  • 18. evaluating users’ models (UCs)➝  problem: user performance cannot be taken as reliable indicator of user’s models➝  important to elicit user’s models, but ➝  paper-and-pencil tests are not a good predictor of hands-on performance ➝  verbalising changes thought process➝  best: interactive methods ➝  constructive interaction ➝  teach-back
  • 19. carrying out conceptual design➝  conceptual design process is an idea; not much tool support➝  suitable methods around, but need to be integrated in conceptual design process➝  build up a repository of tools which can be used in each of the conceptual design stages➝  Conceptual Designer’s Toolbox
  • 20. conceptual design toolbox (1)1. eliciting users’ model of task ➝  task analysis2. eliciting users’ relevant knowledge and experience ➝  scenarios ➝  contemporary legends ➝  help desks ➝  FAQs3. metaphor evaluation ➝  Anderson et al. framework
  • 21. conceptual design toolbox (2)4. constructing design model ➝  extend or merge metaphors or analogies ➝  structural model (as opposed to procedural model) ➝  creative design methods5. implementing design model in system image ➝  linguistic, structural and visual consistency ➝  interviews, scenarios, conceptual maps ➝  grounded theory (ID concepts, relationships, structures)6. Evaluation ➝  verbalprotocols ➝  drawings ➝  constructive interaction, teach back
  • 22. summary points➝  users form internal representations of (mental models) of systems they interact with.➝  an appropriate model facilitates user system interaction, an inappropriate one is likely to impair it.➝  models can be communicated through UI (appearance and behaviour) and training, but fit with users existing knowledge and experience is crucial.➝  metaphors can be used as basis of design model.
  • 23. literatureAnderson, B., Smyth, M., Knott, R., Bergan, J., Alty, J. (1994): MinimisingConceptual Baggage: Making choices about metaphor. In G. Cockton, S. Draper& G. Weir: People and Computers IX -Proceedings of HCI 94, Glasgow, pp179-194.Gentner, S. & Stevens, A. L. [Eds.] (1983): Mental Models. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.Johnson-Laird, P. N. (1983): Mental Models. Cambridge: Cambridge UniversityPress.Nielsen, J. (1990): A Meta-Model for Interacting with Computers. Interacting withComputers,2, 147-160.Norman, D.A. (1986). Cognitive Engineering. In Norman & Draper [Eds.] User-Centered System Design, 1986, Hillsdale, NY: LEA.Norman, D. A. & Draper, S. W. [Eds.] (1986): User-Centered System Design.Hillsdale, NY: LEA.Robert, D., Berry, D., Mullaly, J. Isensee, S. (1998): Designing for the User withOVID: Bridging User Interface Desing and Software Engineering. MacmillanTechnical Pub.Tognazzini, B. (1992): Tog on Interface. Reading, Mass.: Addison-Wesley.