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A Method of Limiting the Features Available to a User Based on their Estimated Expertise

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000199843D
Publication Date: 2010-Sep-17
Document File: 2 page(s) / 43K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

A method is disclosed that identifies the users experience from options and hide/display user elements appropriately. The program identifies features that the user has not used or is unfamiliar with. The program is also capable of hiding more advanced features until the user has been trained to use them. This allows the program to display new pieces of functionality of the system over time, effectively training users to use the system.

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A Method of Limiting the Features Available to a User Based on their Estimated Expertise

Complex applications often contain a large amount of functionality consisting of many user interface elements which are displayed to the user. These elements allow the user to complete a large range of tasks in these system, but are usually displayed immediately to the user, irrelevant of whether they're applicable or

whether the user is familiar with their use

.

    The method described here would introduce specific features to the user over time. The method disclosed achieves this by splitting the user interface into features. If the program has determined that a user should not use a feature then the method would disable those elements associated with the feature. This method allows the system to indicate to the user that there are more features that they have yet to learn about whilst still keeping the user interface consistent with how it should be used when all features are available to them.

    The program disclosed can be split into components. The first component determines which features should be hidden or disabled and applies these changes to the system. The second component, deals with training the user how to use these features that they have available to them and re-enables those features it determines the user is ready to use.

    The first component of the disclosed program decides which features it should hide from the users and it does this based on two criteria:

The program looks at the length of time since the user has last used the system or if the user hasn't used the system before. (E.g if it had just been installed). The program looks at whether the system has been updated with the new features that the user is unaware of.

    Either of these criteria indicate that the program disclosed should help train the user about these new features. By hiding unwanted or irrelevant features the program highlights important features and therefore informs the user of their existence and use.

    In order for t...