Mark Pearl

The following sections are covered in the Interaction Design book – the sections in blue are examinable for 2011, the sections in pink are not examinable.

Summary of ID

A brief example of questions to be expected in the Exam Below are some example questions extracted from previous exam papers and assignments…. I have outlined just the basic section headers, you will need to be able to expand on these…

Define Interaction Design (Chapter 1)

Interactive Design is the process of designing interactive products to support the way people communicate and interact in their everyday working lives. Consider your personal cell phone and choose four of Preece et al’s user experience goals – for each of the four goals describe how that usability goal is implemented in the cell phone or not

There are several usability goals including…

Effective Efficient Safe to use Easy to Learn Define an interface metaphor and state its purpose (Chapter 2)

An interface metaphor provides a structure that is similar in some way to aspects of a familiar entity but that also has its own behaviours and properties. It purpose is to help the user get the essence of the process of finding relevant information, enabling the user to link these to less familiar aspects of the functionality provided. Give two examples of metaphors or analogies used in interaction design and explain how they are used (Chapter 2)

Desktop Metaphor with computers – used to describe a place where you organize everything and have things readily accessible Browsing Metaphor with the internet – the idea of following links in a page through exploring what is there similar to window shopping Explain three disadvantages of or objections to interface metaphors (Chapter 2)

Too constraining – the metaphor could constrain design Not being able to understand the system functionality beyond the metaphor Overly literal translations of existing bad designs (e.g. computer calculator) Discuss interviews as a method of data gathering, referring specifically to different types of interviews and advantages of using interviews

Unstructured Interviews Semi-structured interviews Structured Interviews Focus Groups List the four basic activities of the process of interaction design – briefly explain what each one involves (Chapter 1)

Identifying Needs and establishing requirements Developing alternative designs that meet those requirements Building interactive versions of the the designs so that they can be communicated and assessed Evaluating what is being built throughout the process and the user experience it offers Briefly compare the three evaluation approaches discussed in chapter 12 by identifying the strengths and weaknesses of each approach (Chapter 12 - see pg. 592)

Usability Testing – closed controlled environment Field Studies – examine what the user does in a natural environment Analytical Evaluation – Apply heuristics, cognitive walkthroughs & models

What are the steps involved in cognitive walkthrough? (Chapter 15)

Identify user characteristics and sample tasks Evaluators walk through the action sequences for each task with a focus on the action, visibility of action and response of actions Record critical information including assumptions, side issues Revise design and fix the problems presented Briefly describe each of the four interaction types and give one example of how each interaction type is represented in your cell phone (See Chapter 2)

Instructing – i.e. phoning a number Conversing – i.e. menu driven phone systems Manipulating – i.e. physical objects with rfid’s that a computer monitors the manipulation of Exploring – cell phone games like the SIMS Explain the difference between usability goals and user experience goals (See Chapter 1)

Usability goals include effectiveness, efficiency, safety, utility, learnability & memorability User experience goals include satisfying, enjoyable, engaging, pleasurable, exciting & entertaining. What according to the ISO92412 standard are the four principles of human centred design? (See Chapter 9)

Active involvement of users and clear understanding of user and task requirements An appropriate allocation of function between users and technology The iteration of design solutions Multi-disciplinary design

What is a scenario and how can it be used in requirements elicitation? (See Chapter 10)

A scenario is an informal narrative description that allows exploration and discussion of contexts, needs, and requirements emphasizing the context

What are the three steps of heuristic evaluation? (See Chapter 15)

Briefing session Evaluation period Debriefing session Describe three ways in which users can be involved in the interaction design process (Chapter 9 See pages 419 - 428)

Users may be co-opted to the design team so that they are major contributors Users may be kept informed through regular newsletters or other channels of communication Users may be brought in during the evaluation stage in usability studies

Define and explain the core threads of the Technology as Experience Framework Model and apply these concepts to using your cell phone, giving examples.

Four core threads that make up our holistic experiences in technology as experience framework model…

The sensual thread – how absorbed we get while using the device, i.e. computer game that we find addictive The emotional thread – does it invoke emotions such as happiness, sadness, etc The compositional thread – does it have a narrative path, well thought out path The spatio-temporal thread – how does it effect our space and time What is meant by the term heuristic?

A heuristic is a experience-based technique for problem solving, learning, and discovery. Heuristic methods are used to speed up the process of finding a satisfactory solution, where an exhaustive search is impractical. List four heuristics that are suitable for evaluating a cell phone SMS sending task

Visibility of system status User control and freedom Error prevention Aesthetic and minimalistic design

Apply the four basic activities of interaction design from chapter 9 to the possible redesign of the myUnisa Website Identifying needs and establishing requirements for the user experience Developing alternative designs that meet those requirements Building interactive versions of the designs Evaluating what is being built throughout the process and the user experience it offers

Briefly describe the four interaction types discussed in Chapter 2

Instructing – i.e. typing commands on a console Conversing – i.e. menu driven phone systems Manipulating – i.e. physical objects with rfid’s that a computer monitors the manipulation of Exploring – virtual 3d worlds i.e. sim city? Describe four types of pleasure proposed in Patrick Jordon’s pleasure model

Physio-pleasure – Feels nice to touch Socio-pleasure – Fun to have family participate with it together Psycho-pleasure – Satisfying to use Ideo-pleasure (cognitive) – Makes sense to use, i.e. Eco-friendly car

List the four different types of requirement categories (See Chapter 10)

Functional Requirements Non-Functional Requirements Or it could be the following…

Data requirements Environmental requirements User characteristics Usability goals and user experience goals

What is a conceptual model?

A conceptual model is a high level description of how a system is organized and operates. An abstraction that outlines what people can do with a product and what concepts are needed to understand interacting with it. Briefly describe four components that make up a conceptual model (See Chapter 2 page 51-52)

Major metaphors and analogies that are used to convey to the user how to understand what a product is for and how to use it for an activity The concepts that users are exposed to through the product, including the task domain objects they create and manipulate, their attributes, and the operations that can be performed on them The relationships between those concepts The mappings between the concepts and the user experience the product is designed to support or invoke Give five examples of collaborative technologies that support communication

email videoconferencing videophones computer conferencing chat rooms instant messaging Briefly discuss three aspects of interfaces that can contribute to user frustration

Possible reasons include

Application doesn’t work properly or crashes System doesn’t do what the user want it to User’s expectations are not met System does not provide sufficient info to let user know what to do Error message are vague, obtuse or condemning Appearance of interface too noisy, garish, gimmicky, or patronising System requires users to carry out many steps to perform a task only to discover a mistake was made somewhere along the line and they need to start al over again What are the four key issues that determine the success of a data gathering exercise?

Setting goals Relationship between data collector and provider triangulation pilot studies List six ways in which data can be gathered to establish user requirements.

Interviews Focus Groups Questionnaires Direct Field Observation Direct Lab Observation Indirect Observation What are the steps involved in cognitive walkthrough. (See Chapter 15 page 702 & 703)

1) The characteristics of typical users are identified and documented and sample tasks are developed that focus on the aspect of the design that will be evaluated.

2) A designer or one or more evaluators come together to do the walkthrough

3) The evaluators walk through the action sequences for each task with a focus on the following..

  • Will the correct action be sufficiently evident to the user
  • Will the user notice that the correct action is available
  • Will the user associate and interpret the response from the action correctly 4) As the walkthrough is being done a record of critical information is compiled in which

  • The assumptions about what would cause problems are recorded
  • Notes about side issues and design changes are made
  • A summary of results is compiled 5) The design is then revised to fix the problem presented

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