Table of Contents

VOLUME XIII.5 September + October 2006

  • In this issue
    • In this issue

      Jonathan Arnowitz, Elizabeth Dykstra-Erickson

      Welcome to the second Gadgets issue. This installment takes a more nuts-and-bolts approach to gadgets than the previous round: Here we take a look at the topic with a more scientific bent. Gadgets are becoming increasingly important in HCI. The computing devices coming to the market are various and…

  • Fresh: rant
    • It’s all about the concept…

      Jonathan Arnowitz, Elizabeth Dykstra-Erickson

      Good design is harder and harder to find these days. It is disheartening when people present a single window or Web page and ask for an evaluation, especially when the question is: "Is this good design?" How can a design review be conducted on static interfaces? What is possible…

  • Fresh: ok/cancel
    • Take a hike

      Tom Chi, Kevin Cheng

      ©2006 ACM1072-5220/06/0900$5.00 Permission to make digital or hard copies of all or part of this work for personal or classroom use is granted without fee provided that copies are not made or distributed for profit or commercial advantage and that copies bear this notice and the full citation…

  • Fresh: ask Doctor Usability
    • Too smart and too rich?

      Dr. Usability

      Dear Doctor Usability, I am a consultant, and I am hearing more and more about the interactive Web, about smart clients, rich clients (I have one right now by the way), etc. Anyway, I am being asked to develop a Web application, and I no longer know what to…

  • Fresh: pushing the envelope
    • A Little Help From My Friends

      Fred Sampson

      How often do you turn to the person in the next cubicle or down the hall for help with a software application? Does your teenager program your cell phone for you? How often are you called on to provide training just because it's easier to ask you than to…

  • Fresh: nuts & bolts
    • Almost dead on arrival

      Aaron Marcus, Jim Gasperini

      In June 2004 the San Jose, California, Police Department (SJPD) rolled out a new mobile, in-vehicle communication system for police officers. This roll-out completed the entire replacement of a dispatch and mobile response system developed by PRC in 1990. Working with PRC, the SJPD had spent many years perfecting…

  • Fresh: mailbag
    • Letters to the editor

      Jonathan Arnowitz, Elizabeth Dykstra-Erickson

      Unfulfilled Prophecies I enjoyed your article "CHI at the Movies and on TV" ("Fast Forward," May-June 2006). I'm glad to know I'm not the only person who has this interest. I hold a particular fascination for failed predictions. One of my favorites regarding HCI occurred in Fritz Lang's silent…

  • Forum: under development
    • How to provide useful ICT when called upon

      Edwin Blake

      If a government or NGO (a nongovernmental, nonprofit organization) of a developing country decides that information and communications technology (ICT) can be useful for development, the question that arises for practitioners is how to provide a useful sustainable system that is wanted and actually used. Since computers have been…

  • Forum: here's entertainment
    • Talking about games experiences

      Bruce Phillips

      As a user-experience professional working within the video-game industry, I often find myself uncertain about what experiences we are trying to provide our users. Similarly, I often find myself unsure of what users are experiencing when they play our games. I have a secret longing for the confidence in…

  • Gadgets: part 2
    • Gadgets are here to stay

      Bruno Niman

      I recently saw an ad: "Remember when technology had the ability to amaze you? Believe again." I do—and you probably should too! The difference is technology is much more human this time around. You're reading the second special section on (must-have) gadgets and there's a reason: Gadgets and services…

    • The reality of ICT use is failing to meet the user’s requirements

      Anne Clarke

      The evolution of the global information society continues. Suppliers of devices, services, and infrastructure regularly point to the high levels of penetration of, say, mobile phones or broadband in countries around the world. While this is indeed true in many societies, the levels of penetration are less extensive in…

    • Increasing text-entry usability in mobile devices for languages used in Europe

      Martin Böcker, Bruno Niman, Karl Larsson

      Telecommunications devices currently represent one of the largest global consumer product segments. As telecommunications devices and services converge with technologies such as information processing, broadcast services and the Internet, while at the same time becoming mobile and ubiquitous, the usability of these devices and services becomes a critical factor…

    • Co-design, China, and the commercialization of the mobile user interface

      David Williams

      The mobile user interface is becoming a key differentiator for mobile telephony devices and services. The increased focus on usable, emotive, and branded user interfaces is the result of three key drivers. (The term "device user interface" refers to both the "core" applications management environment and applications such as…

    • Mind the gap

      Pekka Ketola

      The End? My personal computer, the communication and entertainment center for our family, is about to reach the end of its lifecycle. There are many telltale signs—decreasing performance, growing mechanical noise, increasing need for reboots, and incompatibilities with new gadgets. The time is coming for a switch to a…

  • The way i see it
    • Words matter. talk about people

      Donald Norman

      "Welcome back," the hotel clerk at the front desk said to me. "I see you will be staying with us for four nights this time?" "Thank you," I replied, pleasantly surprised that their computer system recognized me as a frequent visitor to this hotel (I knew the clerk didn't…

  • The well-tempered practitioner
    • Brainstorming pitfalls and best practices

      Chauncey Wilson

      "Let's get together and brainstorm!" You have probably heard this call to action many times. Group brainstorming seems like a simple undertaking—you get a group of people together, present a topic or problem, and then ask the group to generate as many ideas as possible. When you are done…

  • Fast forward
    • From KidCHI to BabyCHI

      Aaron Marcus

      What do children want/need from human-computer interaction and communication (HCIC)? What are the long-term effects on them of mobile/computing devices? How early can and should we expose them to the latest technology? ACM/SIGCHI organized the first CHIkids programs at CHI 1996 to explore some of these issues [1]. One…

  • Timelines
    • Turing maturing

      Jonathan Grudin

      "In from three to eight years we will have a machine with the general intelligence of an average human being. I mean a machine that will be able to read Shakespeare, grease a car, play office politics, tell a joke, have a fight. At that point the machine will…

  • Books
  • Event planner
    • Event planner

      interactions Staff

      September 6-8 RO-MAN 2006 2006 IEEE International Symposium on Robot and Human Interactive Communication Hatfield, UK September 11-15 HCI 2006 The 20th BCS HCI Group Conference London, UK September 12-15 Mobile HCI 2006 The 8th International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction with Mobile Devices and Services…

  • Rave
    • Design At Chi

      Jonathan Arnowitz, Elizabeth Dykstra-Erickson

      The New CFP for CHI2007 is out as of press time, and it is an open invitation to various communities, following up on the bold experiments of CHI2006. We like what we see: CHI2006's emphasis on outreach to different communities within CHI and the new program of shorter tutorials…

  • Postcards from the future
    • Phoning it in

      Atticus Wolrab

      ©2006 ACM1072-5220/06/0900$5.00 Permission to make digital or hard copies of all or part of this work for personal or classroom use is granted without fee provided that copies are not made or distributed for profit or commercial advantage and that copies bear this notice and the full citation…