Table of Contents

VOLUME X.5 September + October 2003

  • Editorial
    • The timeless way

      Steven Pemberton

      In 1977 the architect Christopher Alexander with a number of colleagues published the seminal book A Pattern Language. This amazing book essentially describes in 253 chapters the design of cities and regions, from the highest level, down through the design of streets, various varieties of houses, rooms, right down to…

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  • Research alert
    • ScentTrails

      Christopher Olston, Ed Chi

      We propose a new modality for locating information in hypertext environments called ScentTrails. This modality combines the strengths of searching and browsing in a unified interface. In ScentTrails, a user types keywords representing the portion of her information goal that is initially known and compatible with keyword search. Then, a…

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  • What's happening
    • What’s happening

      Marisa Campbell

      Contests 3rd UIST Interface-Design Contest 16th Annual ACM Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology Vancouver, B.C. November 2-5, 2003 UIST will hold its third annual interaction design contest on Sunday, November 2. Participants are encouraged to explore new interfaces while developing effective solutions to a problem that will be…

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  • Business
    • Living on the edges

      David Siegel, Susan Dray

      UCD Heaven? A company that we know has a small but active user-centered design (UCD) community and does a fair amount of both laboratory usability research and field research. Over the years, the company has increased the number of user-centered design professionals it employs, and it is a rare product…

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  • The whiteboard
    • Usability engineers

      Laura Downey

      The masked woman swooped into the room and hovered over her prototype, contemplating her next move. The colors were in perfect harmony, the navigation superb, but something about the design just didn’t work. As she mulled over several alternatives, also wondering how she would deal with the hard-nosed project manager…

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  • HCI and the Web
    • Books and mortar

      William Hudson

      One of the Web’s best-known booksellers appears to have become bored with the idea of selling books. The trickle of products other than books has burgeoned into a torrent flooding from its pages. In the early days, paddling among CDs and DVDs when trying to find books was not a…

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  • Book preview
    • Book preview

      Marisa Campbell

      The Handbook of Task Analysis for Human-Computer Interaction Dan Diaper and Neville Stanton Lawrence Erlbaum, 2003 0805844333 This book is a comprehensive review of the current state of research and use of task analysis for Human-Computer Interaction (HCI). This multi-authored handbook offers the best reference source available on this diverse…

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  • Book review
    • The elements of user experience

      Mary Deaton

      Boxes and Arrows is a Web magazine (www.boxesandarrows.com) that describes itself as a publication for people who are part of "the profession known as ‘what we do’ and its children, information architecture, usability, interaction design, interface design, and graphic design." [2] What do we do? In a recent edition of…

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  • Conference preview and calendar
    • Conference preview and calendar

      Marisa Campbell

      HITS 2003 Humans, Interaction, Technology, Strategy October 16-17, 2003 Chicago, Illinois Interaction design is, now more than ever, a critical resource for business strategy. A growing gap exists between companies’ increasing knowledge of technology and taking products to market, and their decreasing understanding of people’s everyday needs and wants for…

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  • Reflections
    • Hotel heartbreak

      Steven Pemberton

      I travel quite often for my work, and usually have to work out my own flights and hotels. As a consequence I have had a lot of opportunity to study hotel bookings sites, and I can report that they can be divided into three types: appalling; all right, I suppose;…

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  • Conference review
    • DUX2003 Redux

      Elizabeth Dykstra-Erickson

      Prologue They’re up to something, and it looks exciting, promising, awkward, satisfying, messy, and, well, new. The DUX2003 conference held this June 2003 at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco was the first installment of a new biannual ACM conference series for, by, and about user experience designers. Jonathan Arnowitz…

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  • Fast forward
    • When is a user not a user?

      Aaron Marcus

      The CHI community seems to be in purposeful, creative turmoil. Besides discussing the challenging economic circumstances, where new revenues might be found, and marveling at the flood of people returning to universities to pursue or renew academic studies, many professionals are proposing theories about the profession itself—its key concepts, processes,…

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