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What you need to know about Eye Tracking (New version)

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When you see a heatmap for the first time, you are probably so busy saying “wow!” that you forget to critically evaluate what you are seeing. It’s easy to feel intimidated. The technology involved is phenomenal. But this doesn’t mean all research done on an eye tracker is infallible – far from it. This talk is intended to give you a heads-up on how to think critically about eye tracking.

Huge thanks to Bunnyfoot for providing all the eye tracking heatmaps used in this talk. This talk was given at UXLX'10 in Lisbon.

Blog: http://90percentofeverything.com
Company: http://madgex.com

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What you need to know about Eye Tracking (New version)

  1. What you need to know about Eye Tracking<br />Harry Brignull<br />
  2. Blog: 90 percent of everything<br />Company: Madgex<br />
  3. Before we start, a story…<br />
  4. Anyone know what this is?<br />
  5. Pedoscope – used to x-ray feet<br />
  6. Invented by Dr Jacob Lowe for use in WW1 field hospitals<br />
  7. s<br />He patented the pedoscope and licensed it to shoe shops<br />In popular use from 1920-1960!<br />
  8. s<br />He patented the pedoscope and licensed it to shoe shops<br />In popular use from 1920-1960!<br />
  9. Reveals the invisible<br />Exciting for clients<br />Visually compelling<br />Differentiated the owners as ‘experts’<br />Generates sales<br />…but completely unnecessary for fitting shoes!<br />
  10. Image credit: Tobii.com <br />
  11. The Tobii T120 Eye tracker<br />Cost: ≈ €28,000<br />Anyone can buy one<br />Minutes to learn to operate<br />Years to become an expert<br />Image credit: Tobii.com <br />
  12. The Tobii T120 Eye tracker<br />Cost: ≈ €28,000<br />Anyone can buy one<br />Minutes to learn to operate<br />Years to become an expert<br />Reveals the invisible<br />Exciting for clients<br />Visually compelling<br />Differentiates owners as ‘experts’<br />Generates sales<br />Image credit: Tobii.com <br />
  13. The Tobii T120 Eye tracker<br />Cost: ≈ €28,000<br />Anyone can buy one<br />Minutes to learn to operate<br />Years to become an expert<br />Reveals the invisible<br />Exciting for clients<br />Visually compelling<br />Differentiates owners as ‘experts’<br />Generates sales<br />Just like the pedoscope, Eye Tracking can be misused by novices for trivial things<br />Image credit: Tobii.com <br />
  14. 4 common misconceptions <br />
  15. Misconception 1Eye tracking allows you to see what people are thinking<br />
  16. Clooney or Crook – which do people prefer?<br />
  17. Clooney or Crook – which do people prefer?<br />
  18. Eye tracking gives you evidence of what people look at. <br /> This data alone does not tell you whether they like it, understand it or want it! <br />
  19. For this reason, ET is usually paired with other observational data<br />
  20. Caveat: Eye tracking is more useful for some tasks than others<br />
  21. When you have a simple goal e.g. “Do users notice branding within 5s?”<br />Eyes forward<br />Eyes left<br />
  22. When you have a simple goal e.g. “Do users notice branding within 5s?”<br />Eyes forward<br />Eyes left<br />
  23. If only web design were this simple! Web pages serve many different functions - for many different people- doing different things- in their own chosen ways. <br />
  24. Misconception 2If there’s no ‘heat’, users didn’t see it<br />
  25. Just because there’s no ‘heat’, doesn’t mean people didn’t see it.<br /> Users can pick up information through peripheral vision!<br />
  26. Misconception 3Eye tracking is scientific, by definition<br />
  27. Think of a hypothesis regarding this image:<br />Let’s a an initial analysis<br />
  28. Think of a hypothesis regarding this image:<br />Let’s a an initial analysis<br />
  29. Congratulations, you’ve done your first piece of qualitative eye tracking research!<br />
  30. You know what it reminds me of?<br />
  31. Hey, that cloud looks like a rabbit!<br />
  32. Hey, that cloud looks like a rabbit!<br />In other words: looking for patterns and attributing a rationale. <br />This is like any qualitative research - but ET is particularly prone because it is visually abstract and easy to misunderstand.<br />
  33. In an quantitative, empirical ET study you demarcate “Areas Of Interest” (AOIs) like this:<br />Then you usestatistics to find out whether people fixated on one face more than the other<br />and whether the difference in “heat” is down to chance alone!<br />
  34. Misconception 4Heatmaps are generalisable<br />
  35. The user’s goal has a huge impact on eye tracking patterns!<br />Task: count the columns<br />Task: count the people<br />
  36. Example<br />This heat map is based on aggregated data from 54 participants during the first 30 seconds.<br />The report states “all boxes both on the right and the left side of the page are practically ignored”<br />But what was the task given? Without knowing, this heatmap is meaningless!<br /> http://bit.ly/tobii-realeyes<br />
  37. Conclusions<br />
  38. Perhaps you now understand why some don’t like ET!<br />“One of these days, I’m going to make a ‘Just Say No to Eye Trackers’ t-shirt.”<br />“How about a Ouija Board? They run about 1/3000 the price and produce just as good predictions of what works and what doesn’t.”<br />Jared Spool (2009)<br />
  39. ET advocates have been slow to respond to these criticisms<br />There’s a fissure growing between advocates and opponents<br />
  40. The killer question:<br />Is ET any more effective at improving design than conventional methods like think-aloud? <br />
  41. We just don’t know!<br />Where are the flagship case studies?<br />ROI Examples? <br />Findings that could not have been uncovered through other means? <br />
  42. Quite an inconclusive conclusion – but that’s the current state of the industry, folks!<br />
  43. Huge Thanks to<br />Aaron Young & Rebecca Gill of Bunnyfoot<br />James Breeze of Objective Digital <br />Harry Brignull<br />twitter.com/harrybr<br />90percentofeverything.com<br />
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When you see a heatmap for the first time, you are probably so busy saying “wow!” that you forget to critically evaluate what you are seeing. It’s easy to feel intimidated. The technology involved is phenomenal. But this doesn’t mean all research done on an eye tracker is infallible – far from it. This talk is intended to give you a heads-up on how to think critically about eye tracking. Huge thanks to Bunnyfoot for providing all the eye tracking heatmaps used in this talk. This talk was given at UXLX'10 in Lisbon. Blog: http://90percentofeverything.com Company: http://madgex.com

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