Table of Contents

VOLUME XI.2 March + April 2004

  • Editoral
    • The development consortium

      Steven Pemberton

      I know I have said it before, but the CHI conference brings together an amazing combination of people, disciplines, specializations, and interests. It is also the place to watch for the emergence of new interest areas within the broader field of human-computer interaction. There are several venues within the…

  • Research alerts
    • Collaboration usability analysis

      David Pinelle, Carl Gutwin, Saul Greenberg

      Researchers in Computer Supported Cooperative Work have recently developed discount evaluation methods for shared-workspace groupware. Most discount methods rely on some understanding of the context in which the groupware systems will be used, which means that evaluators need to model the tasks that groups will perform. However, existing task…

  • Business
    • Remote possibilities?

      Susan Dray, David Siegel

      This Issue of Remote International Testing The growth of our field has produced both an increasing range of user-centered design (UCD) services and a drive to find the most cost-effective ways of doing things. Increased demand within companies places more pressure on budgets. Suppliers of usability services respond inventively…

  • Design
    • BabelVision

      Ken Haase, David Tamés

      The Problem with Search Technology: I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For As the volume of material online increases, it becomes more difficult and time consuming for people to find what they are looking for [5]. Finding the right document depends on how well query terms match keywords…

  • The whiteboard
    • Accessibility

      Larry Hull

      ACCESSIBLE (1) capable of being reached or used (2) easy to meet or get along with (3) easily obtained (4) being at hand when needed What does it mean to say something is accessible? Does that mean everyone can reach it? use it? obtain it? I like words. Yeah,…

  • HCI and the challenges of mass communications
    • Can HCI shape the future of mass communications?

      Nico Macdonald

      The Internet's greatest potential lies in communication (and mass communication), as this is an area of life well-suited to the digital realm. The sharing of ideas and information is becoming more important in the developed world as skills in manufacturing are decreasingly exploited, and as people have more leisure…

    • From customization to ubiquitous personalization

      Norman Lewis

      The 21st-century citizen will see a proliferation of new electronic technologies: devices with heterogeneous interfaces and advanced services available at home, in the car, in the school, in public spaces. This connected world poses many challenges, opportunities, and risks, the greatest being that its full benefits will not reach…

    • Main HCI issues for the design of interfaces for ubiquitous interactive multimedia broadcast

      Anxo Roibás, Riccardo Sala

      Imagine a context of ubiquitous communication in which users will be free to choose the most appropriate interface to interact in the digital world [1]. In other words, users will be able to exchange almost any kind of information, with anyone, on any machine, at any place and time.…

    • There’s no such thing as an “average” user

      Neil Budde

      In the American radio program Prairie Home Companion's fictional Lake Wobegon, we are told on each show's introduction, "All the children are above average." I'm reminded of such hyperbole frequently when I hear how many people analyze various user behaviors for online products. In this case, however, too often…

    • E-mail and ease of use

      Mark Hurst

      The growing popularity of Internet-based communications tools raises the question of which method is the most effective, in which contexts. The Internet is widely accepted as a viable medium for mass communications. Most newspapers, magazines, television networks, and other major media outlets already have online presences—usually in the form…

    • Anthropomorphizing mass communication

      Nick Bryan-Kinns, Peter Broadbent

      For mass communication to develop, it needs to develop conversational skills. That is, rather than one-way communication from the commercial entity to the consumer, it needs to be a two-way conversational dialogue characterized by short but meaningful interactions. We are at a pivotal time in our use and experience…

    • Imagining tomorrow’s news

      Dan Gillmor

      The Net has brought enormous changes to journalism. For the first time we have a global audience. There are no constraints on how much we offer; no limits to column inches or broadcast time, and what we offer can have far greater depth. We can measure what people want…

    • Audience design

      Ann Light

      Networked media introduce a new interface between the producers and consumers of information, across a range of platforms. Centralized distribution, connecting the worlds of producer and user through a screen now allows for (1) immediate, two-way, personalized responses, and (2) dialogue about content, and (3) joint content creation. But…

    • What recreational telephone conferencing can teach us about the future of mass communications

      Darren Reed

      By paying attention to the relationship between communication technology and meaningful everyday behavior, we can present valuable lessons for those developing communication media. Specifically, we present a moment of co-evolution of the telephone and its purposeful use, in the development of the recreational telephone conference, made possible by the…

    • Can HCI deliver on its promise?

      Andrew Zolli

      Each of the articles in this issue of interactions presents an area in which the HCI community could have a significant impact. The question is: Will it? Unfortunately, in informal discussions with many mass-communications stakeholders, the answer, at present, seems to be: "Not likely." Five factors seem to be…

    • Networked information services in context-sensitive environments

      Giles Rollestone

      Networks not only have transformed the business models of organizations—they are reshaping existing social landscapes, creating new social shapes that affect the forms and communication structures within these environments inside and out. Imagine a place you could go where accessing information was more like moving about a city, where…

    • HCI can raise the level of discourse on the Web

      Michael Schrage

      You are a fool. You are an idiot. You are a moron. Nothing you write is worth reading. Please go away and contemplate just how stupid you really are. That's how I began a column I wrote for MIT's Technology Review magazine about one of the true tragedies of…

    • Meta-design for sensible information

      Louis Weitzman

      Increasingly, information is being reused across applications, portals, devices, and users. Current publishing systems manage content by providing version and access control, the means of publishing pages, organizing workflow, and separating content and design. However, even with support for the separation of content and design, most systems today do…

    • A need to commune

      Ann Light

      A director of a small company recently told me that he liked to watch television in the evening so that he could join in discussions about it with his workforce the next day. The bonding that ensued was a cheap, effective management tool, while the business of watching the…

    • The future’s here;

      Lorenzo Wood, Luke Skrebowski

      The pace of innovation in the technology industry means that people are constantly presented with new things to learn and asked to adopt things for which they often have not expressed a direct need. Unsurprisingly, most people cope by switching off and getting involved only with that which they…

    • HCI and mass communications

      Andrew Zolli

      At first blush, the question "is human-computer interaction design a key to the future of mass communication?" seems paradoxical. After all, the very thing that makes traditional mass communications platforms (such as television, radio, newspapers, and magazines) so successful is how completely they have solved their respective interface challenges.…

    • Attention deficit disorder

      Luke Skrebowski

      Despite the depressed state of world markets, magazines, TV channels, radio stations, and gaming platforms continue to proliferate and diversify at a rapid pace, saturating our audiovisual landscape with a riot of competing offerings. As Todd Gitlin, professor of Journalism and Sociology at New York University puts it: "Never…

  • HCI and the Web
    • Applying research to design

      William Hudson

      The world of e-commerce is a competitive one, with unrelenting pressure to attract users to your site and improve conversion rates (the number of users who become purchasers). Imagine then your delight at the prospect of increasing sales through the addition of a few carefully chosen images. A short…

  • Fast forward
    • Patterns within patterns

      Aaron Marcus

      Introduction to Design Patterns In past essays of "Fast Forward," I have written about the computer-human interaction (CHI) community being a gathering of tribes from many disciplines and incorporating wisdom from diverse fields. One example of cross-disciplinary fertilization is the adaptation of architectural design patterns to user-interface (UI) design…

  • Books
    • Books

      Kim Goodwin

      Paper Prototyping: The Fast and Easy Way to Design and Refine User Interfaces Carolyn Snyder When I heard that Carolyn Snyder was writing a book on paper prototyping, I knew it would be well worth reading. It's not just that she's an expert in the field; she's also the…