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30 JUNE 2011

Beyond Usability: Process, Outcome and Affect in human computer interactions

"Currently, our best theories are limited in terms of their applicability to design. However, we cannot retreat into the easy empiricism of current usability perspectives where everything is measured in terms of effectiveness, efficiency and satisfaction. Theory building must occur if we are to have long term impact and the diversity of experiences users can have with technology are not simply reduced to these operational criteria. We need to stretch our conception of interaction beyond performance and simple likes/dislikes. I argue for a richer sense of user experience, one that allows for aesthetics as much as efficiency and the creation of community discourse forms over time as much as the measurement of effectiveness in a single task. There is much work ahead but unless we embrace these issues as part of our research agenda, then the study of HCI will forever be piecemeal and weak, and its results will find little positive reception among the many designers and consumers who could most benefit from them."

(Andrew Dillon)

Dillon, A. (2001) Beyond usability: process, outcome and affect in human–computer interactions. Canadian Journal of Library and Information Science, 26(4), 57–69.

[Dillon argues for a richer sense of what constitutes web usability and resists the easy empiricism espoused by most usability engineers.]

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TAGS

aestheticsamateurism • Andrew Dillon • crisis of empiricism • cult of the amateur • diversity of experienceseasy empiricism • effectiveness • efficiencyengineeringHCImeasurementoperational criteriaperformanceperformativitypseudo science of web usabilitypseudosciencepsychologyrich user experiencesatisfactionsimple evaluationssingle task • stretch our conceptions • theoretical contexttheoretical reflectionuninformed perspectivesusability • usability perspectives • user experienceusers • web usability • web usability science

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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