Human-Computer Interaction 3e Dix, Finlay, Abowd, Beale

exercises  -  5. interaction design basics

EXERCISE 5.11 [extra - not in book]

This question relates to the Soap Booth scenario.

You are the senior usability specialist at Channel 17 and your junior usability specialist Kevin has produced the following scenario:

Jenny goes to the news agent, and buys her weekly copy of Ice magazine.  She goes into the Soap Booth and chats with new friends.

  1. (ii)   Why is this a poor scenario.
  2. (iii)   Improve this scenario.
  3. (iv)   List 2 good aspects of the design and briefly explain why.
  4. (v)   List 5 different problems with the screen layout, widget choice etc. and for each offer a potential alternative design

answer available for tutors only

  1. Just too little detail in both what is done and in how the person feels etc.
  2. Looking for a good paragraph of rich description.  For maximum marks this should NOT just be a description of hitting buttons but should include physical movements, personal context, thoughts, feelings etc.
  3. 2 from the following or anything else good (if there is anything!)

    • initial function flows well left to right and is visually grouped
    • little web cam group uses space to group
    • dating has clear box to group
    • consistent font style (albeit not size!)
  4. 5 from the following or other bad things
    • Name list 500 names too long for pulldown!  – try two level, alphabetic then names.
    • Very hard to work out what buttons use what information – better more consistent grouping, better instructions
    • Web cam indicator colour red/green colour blindness – have two lights
    • Bad alignment in star rating – align to right/decimal point ? do we really need 7 decimal places??
    • Who column --  the initial flowery descriptions make it hard to scan for a name – perhaps invert order “Fred Blossom, the great star” or add these in a separate column
    • No means to order columns – allow sorting by selecting column head
    • No keyboard so how do we type age – turn into selection list, perhaps for age ranges
    • Male/female indicator – perhaps should be radio buttons

Other exercises in this chapter

ex.5.1 (tut), ex.5.2 (tut), ex.5.3 (tut), ex.5.4 (tut), ex.5.5 (tut), ex.5.6 (ans), ex.5.7 (tut), ex.5.8 (tut), ex.5.9 (tut), ex.5.10 (tut), ex.5.11 (tut), ex.5.12 (tut)

all exercises for this chapter

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