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A tale of two technologies talk at autodesk 5-13


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  • 1. A Tale of Two Missions: UserResearch, Design andTechnologyJay TrimbleNASA Ames Research CenterAutodesk 5-13Wednesday, May 22, 13
  • 2. UserResearchDesignTechnologyWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 3. NASAWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 4. A Tale of Two User TechnologyMissions• Mars Exploration Rovers,landed in 2004, 90-dayestimated mission life, onerover still operational in 2013• Mission Control TechnologiesWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 5. Mars ExplorationRovers• Science Objectives• Determine theaqueous, climaticand geologichistory of a site onMars whereconditions mayhave been favorableto the preservationof evidence of pre-biotic or bioticprocessesWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 6. OperationsWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 7. Human CenteredComputing for MER• We, a division from NASA Ames, proposedto work with the JPL mission team• Our proposal was methods, not tools• A comprehensive look at work practiceusing ethnographyWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 8. Justification• Increase productivity during surface opsphase• Nominal 90-day mission• Daily surface productivity limitations of arobotic surrogate• Mitigate operational error riskWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 9. Observations• Interviews and observations• Observations were key• Observations often reveal vastdiscrepancies between what people saythey do and what people actually do -Don Norman• Difficult to observe processes that don’texist yetWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 10. What we saw• Science fieldtest, roughly2 yearsbeforelaunchWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 11. FIDO Field Test 2001Wednesday, May 22, 13
  • 12. PlanningWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 13. IBM Blueboard + FIDO = MERBoard+ =Wednesday, May 22, 13
  • 14. MERBoardWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 15. MERBoard Platform• Hardware• Flat screen display (new at the time) withtouchscreen overlay• Software• Written in Java• Provided a large touch screen interactiondisplay with whiteboard, storage space,screen capture, Screen sharing (VNC)Wednesday, May 22, 13
  • 16. General Tools• Whiteboard• VNC• Browser• Personal Storage SpaceWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 17. MERBoard WhiteboardPresent, Save, retrieve,ubiquitous access, owners,versionsWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 18. MERSpace Design--Personal data in a collaborative space--A consistent model for storing and retrieving dataWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 19. Remote AccessView, control,capture, save-Board to Board-PC to BoardWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 20. Whiteboard Use in Surface OpsWrite, broadcast,present, save, recallWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 21. Specific Tool• Sol Tree Plug-inWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 22. Creating Sol TreesWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 23. Presenting Sol TreesWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 24. Personal tools• Initial MER observations suggest thatscientists default to their own tools• Use mission tools when they fill a desiredniche, or when required, future missionsystems will benefit from interoperabilityWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 25. Research to Product• Sol Trees - a clear need and a successfulproduct• MERBoard - a general solution to a broadset of issues and an attempt to dosomething new - mixed resultsWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 26. A Lesson Learned• What doMERBoardand acomputerfor thekitchenhave incommon?Wednesday, May 22, 13
  • 27. MCT• A technology approach to a problem class• Inspired by personal experience, OpenDoc, OS/2 and a particular question aboutinteroperability from a MER userWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 28. Inspirations• Opendoc• Star• “The Xerox was brilliantlydesigned...had ease of use features anda philosophy that has not beenequaled since. Many of the developersof systems in the marketplace todaywould do well to study the Star.” --Don Norman, 1998Wednesday, May 22, 13
  • 29. The Problem• Applications are walled off worlds• Users become integrators• Duplicated functionalityWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 30. Our Solution• Mission Control Technologies• It’s open source, give it a try••, May 22, 13
  • 31. ApplicationsDifferent Interactions DuplicationWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 32. GranularityMedium GranularityFine GranularityLarge Granularity ComponentsWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 33. User Objects• All in one integrated environment• Consistent interactions• Model their real world domaincounterparts• The same thing in many viewsWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 34. Putting it all together• Everything in oneenvironment• Everything is anobject withconsistentbehavior• Objects may begroups intocollections• Collections areuser-objectsWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 35. The Same Thing, ManyViewsAlphaViewPlotViewInfoViewWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 36. NotebookViews• This notebookis a user-object, withembedded textand telemetryobjects• The same thingis shown intwo views -notebook andWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 37. Multi-Domain CompositionWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 38. A Real World Example - DataAssociation• Current software• Place a widget on the screen.• Associate a parameter with it, repeat and re-check over and over for reuse or differentviews• MCT• Associate a parameter with a user object once• Reuse as often as needed, share, change viewlive in placeWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 39. Legacy MCTSteps 20 8Manual data entries 5 1External tools used 1 0Operator efficiency - Building DisplaysBuildTestBuildTestProcess stepsWhat actions does it take to build andtest a display?Process timeHow long does it take to accomplish thosesteps?Legacy MCTMinutes to complete 65 690% reductionin time60% reductionin steps80% reduction inmanual entryManual data entry is theprimary source of errors / riskWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 40. An Icon• A purelytechnicalapproach tochange willfailWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 41. 9Participatory DesignObservePrototypeDesign TogetherWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 42. Participatory Design• We built a unified team across organizations• Users felt ownership of the design• User who were not part of the PD process didnot feel a sense of ownership• User expectations conveyed through hypeand other unofficial means of communicationsdid not match the reality of the productWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 43. Agile + PDUser Feedback3 Weeks Iteration nDaily iteration nBuild toCustomerTestFeature mods/additions,bug fixesOptional Mid-IterationHackathon tests bigfeaturesPre-ShipHackathonPriorities/JIRARankingsNightly Build/Internal testing as features roll outCodingIssue Tracking Updates/Priorities/RankingsUE & Tech Spec dates driven by coding dependenciesDeliverto customerAgile Development IterationCode Freeze(-3 days)FeatureFreeze(-7 days)Customer triagesissues it discoveredCustomeracceptance testCustomer verificationof closed JIRA issuesCustomerinstallsiteration n-1Optionally, hotpatchIteration n+1Start 24 hour test (-2 day)Wednesday, May 22, 13
  • 44. User project their wishes ontosoftware they have not seen yet• You must fill in the blank• How you fill in it, andthe level of fidelity,affects stakeholderperceptionsWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 45. CommunicationsWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 46. First use can be a shockWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 47. Results: Bad• The tightly integrated developer/customer teamexacerbated a pre-existing polarization that pittedthose who wanted new software “against” thosewho did not.• Our deploy early and often model wasincompatible with the broader user groups mentalmodel of users not seeing the software until thefinal product.Wednesday, May 22, 13
  • 48. Results:Good• Through participatory design and agile developmentwe built a unified team composed of the designers,developers and users.• A user object model in which objects behave asconsistent representations of their real world domainobject counterparts - these are not widgets• We built a modular user-composable softwarearchitectureWednesday, May 22, 13
  • 49. Try It••, May 22, 13