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Interaction Design

Lecture 1

Robert Griffin

on 4 September 2017

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Transcript of Interaction Design

Help designers:
understand how to design interactive products that fit with what people want, need and may desire
appreciate that one size does not fit all
e.g., teenagers are very different to grown-ups
identify any incorrect assumptions they may have about particular user groups
e.g., not all old people want or need big fonts
be aware of both people’s sensitivities and their capabilities
Why go to this length?

Establishing requirements
Developing alternatives

Not to work in a particular way but to use a range of methods, techniques and frameworks.
What is involved in the process of interaction design
How a product behaves and is used by people in the real world
the way people feel about it and their pleasure and satisfaction when using it, looking at it, holding it, and opening or closing it
“every product that is used by someone has a user experience: newspapers, ketchup bottles, reclining armchairs, cardigan sweaters.” (Garrett, 2003)
Cannot design a user experience, only design for a user experience
The User Experience
Academic disciplines contributing to ID:
Social Sciences
Computing Sciences
Relationship between ID, HCI and other fields
HCI and interaction design
Develop usable products
Usability means easy to learn, effective to use and provide an enjoyable experience
Involve users in the design process
Goals of interaction design
Need to take into account what people are good and bad at
Consider what might help people in the way they currently do things
Think through what might provide quality user experiences
Listen to what people want and get them involved
Use tried and tested user-centered methods
Understanding users’ needs
Novel interface
Need to take into account:
Who the users are
What activities are being carried out
Where the interaction is taking place

Need to optimise the interactions users have with a product
So that they match the users’ activities and needs
What to design
What is interaction design?
Interfaces are virtual and do not have affordances like physical objects
Norman argues it does not make sense to talk about interfaces in terms of ‘real’ affordances
Instead interfaces are better conceptualized as ‘perceived’ affordances
Learned conventions of arbitrary mappings between action and effect at the interface
Some mappings are better than others
What does ‘affordance’ have to offer interaction design?
Refers to an attribute of an object that allows people to know how to use it
e.g. a mouse button invites pushing, a door handle affords pulling

Norman (1988) used the term to discuss the design of everyday objects

Since has been much popularised in interaction design to discuss how to design interface objects
e.g. scrollbars to afford moving up and down, icons to afford clicking on
Affordances: to give a clue
Design interfaces to have similar operations and use similar elements for similar tasks
For example:
always use ctrl key plus first initial of the command for an operation – ctrl+C, ctrl+S, ctrl+O
Main benefit is consistent interfaces are easier to learn and use
Restricting the possible actions that can be performed
Helps prevent user from selecting incorrect options
Physical objects can be designed to constrain things
e.g. only one way you can insert a key into a lock
Selecting terms to convey a person’s feelings, emotions, etc., can help designers understand the multifaceted nature of the user experience

How do usability goals differ from user experience goals?

Are there trade-offs between the two kinds of goals?
e.g. can a product be both fun and safe?

How easy is it to measure usability versus user experience goals?
Usability and user experience goals
Effective to use
Efficient to use
Safe to use
Have good utility
Easy to learn
Easy to remember how to use
Usability goals
5/21/2012 versus 21/5/2012?
Which should be used for international services and online forms?

Why is it that certain products, like the iPod, are universally accepted by people from all parts of the world whereas websites are reacted to differently by people from different cultures?
Are cultural differences important?
users should be involved through the development of the project
specific usability and user experience goals need to be identified, clearly documented and agreed at the beginning of the project
iteration is needed through the core activities
Core characteristics of interaction design
Designing interactive products to support the way people communicate and interact in their everyday and working lives
Sharp, Rogers and Preece (2011)

The design of spaces for human communication and interaction
Winograd (1997)

An interface is the link between a user and a product that communicates how a product will be used, creating an experience for the people who will use it.
What is interaction design?
Marble answering machine (Bishop, 1995)
Based on how everyday objects behave
Easy, intuitive and a pleasure to use
Only requires one-step actions to perform core tasks
Good design
Interaction design is concerned with designing interactive products to support the way people communicate and interact in their everyday and working lives
It is concerned with how to create quality user experiences
It requires taking into account a number of interdependent factors, including context of use, type of activities, cultural differences, and user groups
It is multidisciplinary, involving many inputs from wide-reaching disciplines and fields
Key points
From: www.baddesigns.com
Where do you plug the mouse?

Where do you plug the keyboard?

top or bottom connector?

Do the color coded icons help?
Logical or ambiguous design?
Many people from different backgrounds involved
Different perspectives and ways of seeing and talking about things
more ideas and designs generated
difficult to communicate and progress forward the designs being create
Working in multidisciplinary teams
Why is this Furnace Switch so bad?
Bad designs
From: www.baddesigns.com
(i) A provides direct adjacent mapping between icon and connector

(ii) B provides color coding to associate the connectors with the labels
How to design them more logically
What is wrong with the mp3 player on the right?
Why is the iPod so much better designed?
Good and bad design
Sending information back to the user about what has been done
Includes sound, highlighting, animation and combinations of these

e.g. when screen button clicked on provides sound or red highlight feedback:
Virtual affordances
How do the following screen objects afford?
What if you were a novice user?
Would you know what to do with them?
For most switches "on" is up and "off" is down.
However, that isn't always the case, so adding on/off labels is a good idea.

But in this case, the labels don't clarify matters, they confuse them.
If the switch is pointing to "Off", it's really "On", and vice versa.
Imagine how much clearer this would have been if they had reversed the position of the on/off labels and left the arrows off completely.

Open Coca Cola Ireland is one tab in your browser http://www.coca-cola.ie/

Open Coca Cola Korea in another http://www.cocacola.co.kr/

Compare the two how are they different?
What cultural differences can you see if any?
American anthropologist Edward T. Hall proposed the theory o
f Low Context
High Context cultures

Low Context cultures, such as America, Britain and Germany, value words over context, and individualism over groups.
In Low Context cultures, communication is generally explicit and direct – people’s meaning is largely conveyed in their words, rather than in the context of the situation, and people appreciate direct and clear communication.

On the other hand, in High Context cultures, such as China, India and Japan, messages are often implied within communication, and people take a more indirect approach to communicating – the relationship and various statuses of the speakers plays a large role in meaning, rather than just what is being said. For instance, in Japanese culture, it takes an in-depth cultural knowledge to fully grasp a conversation between two native speakers because there can be as much communicated by what is not said as what is said.

In website design, this means that for a High Context culture, your landing pages may talk about your brand, its history and your values, rather than getting straight to the nitty gritty details about prices and products. It also means you may want to use more images and more animation – a bright, colorful and, to western eyes, cluttered website design will appeal more to the Asian aesthetic than the minimalism that is preferred by western/European web surfers. But more on that later.
Translating your text into the target language is only the beginning. You must also take into consideration such things as color connotations, animation and preferences in layout.

Asian audiences prefer visual effects for communicating, which creates a larger need for images and animation graphics.

The saying ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’ is particularly true when tackling Asia. Major international companies like McDonalds and Coca-Cola have their Asian websites packed with images of people enjoying their products, whereas those aimed towards Western customers rely more on clever text to deliver the message.

Although Flash is not always a good option when creating a website because of its tendency to slow down the loading of pages, you might want to consider it for the Asian market. High Context cultures enjoy graphical animations and sounds, even if it takes longer for a website’s homepage to load. From dancing letters to kids running around, western companies often let their Asian websites run wild.
Task for Next Week:

You are required to decide upon 3 products you interact with:
1. an interactive product you
2. an interactive product you
3. an interactive product you
You can bring the real physical object into class a photograph or a web address.

Be prepared to discuss your choices in class.
What other feedback methods are used by products?
Which aspects of the video would you class as Usability and which are User Experience?
Full transcript