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OBSERVATIONAL RESEARCH IN USER-COMPUTER INTERACTION

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000128309D
Original Publication Date: 1975-Dec-31
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Sep-15
Document File: 18 page(s) / 67K

Publishing Venue

Software Patent Institute

Related People

Daniel F. Kane, Jr.: AUTHOR [+3]

Abstract

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 1.2 THE DIFFICULTIES OF THEORY AND EXPERIMENT . . . . ... . . . . . . I TYPES OF RESEARCH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 INFORMATION SYSTEMS 3 USER-COMPUTER INTERACTION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 1.3 THE HEURISTIC METHODOLOGY . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 TEAMWORK . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 EVOLUTIONARY METHOD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 DEVELOPMENT AS RESEARCH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . 12 1.4 THE CONTEXT OF LBL-MIS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13

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Page 1 of 18

THIS DOCUMENT IS AN APPROXIMATE REPRESENTATION OF THE ORIGINAL.

OBSERVATIONAL RESEARCH IN USER-COMPUTER INTERACTION

Daniel F. Kane, Jr.

Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory Univ ' ersity of California .Berkeley, California 94720

TABLE OF CONTENTS

OBSERVATIONAL RESEARCH IN USER-COMPUTER INTERACTION

1.1 INTRODUCTION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.2 THE DIFFICULTIES OF THEORY
AND EXPERIMENT . . . . ... . . . . . . I

TYPES OF RESEARCH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 INFORMATION SYSTEMS 3 USER-
COMPUTER INTERACTION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5

1.3 THE HEURISTIC METHODOLOGY . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . TEAMWORK . . . . . . . . . . . . .
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 EVOLUTIONARY METHOD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
DEVELOPMENT AS RESEARCH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . 12 1.4 THE CONTEXT OF LBL-
MIS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . RESEARCH ENVIRONMENT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
NATURE OF THE USERS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 MANAGEMENT INFORMATION
SYSTEMS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15

1.5 SOME MEASURES OF SUCCESS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . RECOVERY OF COSTS . . . .
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 EXPANSION OF USER POPULATION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18
CONCENTRATION ON PRODUCTIVE TASK . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20

1.6 SUMMARY . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . 1.7 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS . . . . . . . . . . .
. . . . . . . . . . . . . .

1.1 INTRODUCTION

There are three phases to science--observation, experimentation, and theori-zation. The psychological,aspects of user-computer interaction are extremely complex, making theory and even experiment difficult if not suspect. Research on user-computer interaction is not carried out in a vacuum, however; it is applied research, directed to improving the mind-computer symbiosis in practical applications. So,, while user-computer interaction is not a naturally occurring phenomenon, observation may take the form of heuristic development of a system with close cooperation from users, evolving the interactive interface along the patterns that seem most naturally useful. The environment at the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory has been especially conducive to this type of research. An interactive Budget Management System, developed in this man ner within the Physics Division, has been successfully adopted and used by other divisions.

This paper is primarily concerned with methodology rather than with justi-fication of this field of research or with results from the author's work. The next chapter describes the nature of user-

University of California at Berkeley Page 1 Dec 31, 1975

Page 2 of 18

OBSERVATIONAL RESEARCH IN USER-COMPUTER INTERACTION

computer interaction in information systems and suggests what types of research are viable. The third chapter pre-sents the observational methodology of...