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IJHCS Tables of Contents: 474849505152535455565758596061626364656667

International Journal of Human-Computer Studies 57

Editors:B. R. Gaines
Publisher:Elsevier Science Publishers
Standard No:ISSN 0020-7373; TA 167 A1 I5
Links:Table of Contents
  1. IJHCS 2002 Volume 57 Issue 1
  2. IJHCS 2002 Volume 57 Issue 2
  3. IJHCS 2002 Volume 57 Issue 3
  4. IJHCS 2002 Volume 57 Issue 4
  5. IJHCS 2002 Volume 57 Issue 5
  6. IJHCS 2002 Volume 57 Issue 6

IJHCS 2002 Volume 57 Issue 1

The effects of graphic organizers giving cues to the structure of a hypertext document on users' navigation strategies and performance BIBA 1-26
  Rachel Michael Nilsson; Richard E. Mayer
Two experiments examined the effects of graphical organizers on users' navigation of a 150-page hierarchical website of aquatic animals. In Experiment 1, users were given either a non-clickable map (map group) or no map (no-map group) and answered 30 questions by searching the website. The map group was more efficient (visited fewer pages) on the first 20 questions (learning phase) but the no-map group was marginally more efficient on the last 10 questions (test phase), and displayed more flexible search strategies. In Experiment 2, users were either given a simplified organizer locating the current page in the website (explicit group) or an alphabetized list of superordinate pages (implicit group). The task from Experiment 1 was repeated. No differences in efficiency were found, but the explicit group was faster than the implicit group in the test phase. The results depended on individual differences in spatial skills. These results suggest a tradeoff between organizers that are useful initially and those that promote structural learning.
Vision-based user interfaces: methods and applications BIBA 27-73
  Marco Porta
Within the class of perceptive user interfaces (i.e. interfaces providing the computer with perceptive capabilities), artificial vision is being exploited more and more as a new input modality, in addition to or in replacement of standard interaction paradigms. The aim of this paper is to provide a global view on the field of vision-based interfaces (VBIs), through the analysis of the methods used for their implementation and the exploration of the practical systems in which they have been employed. The focus will mostly be on techniques and prototypes intended for office and home PC-based use, as we are mainly interested in vision technology applied to ordinary computing environments. After a brief introduction to basic concepts about interfaces and image processing, the attention will be shifted to the four main areas in which VBIs find their maximum expression, namely head tracking, face/facial expression recognition, eye tracking and gesture recognition.
A case study on integrating contextual information with analytical usability evaluation BIBA 75-99
  A. Blandford; G. Rugg
The work reported here integrates an analytical evaluation technique, Programmable User Modelling, with established knowledge elicitation techniques; the choice of techniques is guided by a selection framework, ACRE. The study was conducted in conjunction with an ongoing industrial design project. Techniques were selected to obtain domain knowledge in a systematic way; the rationale behind each choice is discussed. The use of "negative scenarios" as a means of assessing the severity of usability findings is introduced.

IJHCS 2002 Volume 57 Issue 2

Loglinear and multidimensional scaling models of digital library navigation BIBA 101-119
  Barbara P. Buttenfield; Rene F. Reitsma
Computer transaction log analysis comprises the modeling of patterns of machine-user transactions. Due to the web-like structure of the Internet, Interactions can be represented in a three-dimensional, origin-destination-time flow/transaction matrix. Loglinear models are used to model these transactions in terms of their time, origin and destination components and to detect the signature and stability of patterns of navigation through an Internet-based digital library. Through the use of metric multidimensional scaling, transaction patterns are then visualized and interpreted. The methods are applied to a 12-month time series of transaction logs taken from the Alexandria Digital Library, a web-based digital library of maps and other cartographic materials. Among other things, results show that transaction patterns do not change significantly despite changes in the user interface and that user training has a significant impact on people's navigation of the library.
Driving usability into the public administration: the Italian experience*1 BIBAK 121-138
  Tiziana Catarci; Giacinto Matarazzo; Gianluigi Raiss
The Italian Public Administration (PA) represents an important testbed for fulfilment of software usability in real settings. This is due to the volume of existing applications, the various types of ongoing projects and the potential users to whom the produced applications are addressed (both internal PA users and citizen-users). Most acquisitions of computer products in the PA are made in terms of ad hoc developments. This type of development could provide, in principle, the best condition for usability purposes, i.e. a constant contiguity between designers and users. Unfortunately, this does not lead to user-centred projects and usable products in reality.
   To analyse the current situation and propose improvements, the Italian authority which controls the software diffusion in PAs (Autorita per l'Informatica nella Pubblica Amministrazione -- AIPA) created a working group, the Usability Working Group -- UWG. Among the various activities of the group, two tests carried out for the PA on two different development designs of interactive systems gave several hints. The UWG also produced the guidelines for setting up PA contracts including usability as a key requirement for the interactive systems to be supplied. This paper reports the tests, compares the results with the ISO 13407 (1999) standard, and outlines the main indications coming from the proposed guidelines. Finally, the outcome and influence of the UWG activities on the PA contracts is discussed.
Keywords: interactive systems in public administration; services to the citizen; software usability; user-centred design
Footprints of information foragers: behaviour semantics of visual exploration BIBA 139-163
  Chaomei Chen; Timothy Cribbin; Jasna Kuljis; Robert MacRedie
Social navigation exploits the knowledge and experience of peer users of information resources. A wide variety of visual-spatial approaches become increasingly popular as a means to optimize information access as well as to foster and sustain a virtual community among geographically distributed users. An information landscape is among the most appealing design options of representing and communicating the essence of distributed information resources to users. A fundamental and challenging issue is how an information landscape can be designed such that it will not only preserve the essence of the underlying information structure, but also accommodate the diversity of individual users. The majority of research in social navigation has been focusing on how to extract useful information from what is in common between users' profiles, their interests and preferences. In this article, we explore the role of modelling sequential behaviour patterns of users in augmenting social navigation in thematic landscapes. In particular, we compare and analyse the trails of individual users in thematic spaces along with their cognitive ability measures. We are interested in whether such trails can provide useful guidance for social navigation if they are embedded in a visual-spatial environment. Furthermore, we are interested in whether such information can help users to learn from each other, for example, from the ones who have been successful in retrieving documents. In this article, we first describe how users' trails in sessions of an experimental study of visual information retrieval can be characterized by Hidden Markov Models. Trails of users with the most successful retrieval performance are used to estimate parameters of such models. Optimal virtual trails generated from the models are visualized and animated as if they were actual trails of individual users in order to highlight behavioural patterns that may foster social navigation. The findings of the research will provide direct input to the design of social navigation systems as well as to enrich theories of social navigation in a wider context. These findings will lead to the further development and consolidation of a tightly coupled paradigm of spatial, semantic and social navigation.

IJHCS 2002 Volume 57 Issue 3

Modelling multiple mind-matter interaction BIBA 165-214
  Catholijn M. Jonker; Jan Treur
Relations between mental and physical aspects of an agent can be of various types. Sensing and acting are among the more commonly modelled types. In agent modelling approaches often this is the only interaction between the physical and mental; other possible types of interactions are abstracted away. If it is also taken into account that the agent's mind has a materialization in the form of a brain, the relations between mind and matter may become more complex. An explanation of a dynamic pattern may involve mental aspects, physical aspects, and interactions between mental and physical aspects. An explanatory perspective sometimes advocated for such more complex phenomena is explanatory pluralism. According to this perspective an explanation can consist of parts of a different signature, for example, a partial physical explanation and a partial mentalistic explanation. Each of these partial explanations is insufficient to explain the whole phenomenon, but together they do explain the whole, if some interaction is assumed. How for such explanations the different types of interaction between mind and matter of an agent and the material world can be modelled in a conceptually and semantically sound manner, and how the overall explanation is composed from the parts, using these interactions, is the main topic of this paper. The generic model presented can be used to model, explain and simulate a variety of phenomena in which multiple mind-matter interactions occur, including, for example, sensing and acting, (planned) birth and death, bacterial behaviour, getting brain damage, psychosomatic diseases and applications of direct brain-computer interfaces.
Understanding user acceptance of digital libraries: what are the roles of interface characteristics, organizational context, and individual differences? BIBA 215-242
  James Y. L. Thong; Weiyin Hong; Kar-Yan Tam
Digital library research efforts originating from library and information scientists have focused on the technical development. While millions of dollars have been spent on building "usable" digital libraries, previous research indicates that potential users may still not use them. This study contributes to understanding user acceptance of digital libraries by utilizing the technology acceptance model (TAM). Three system interface characteristics, three organizational context variables, and three individual differences are identified as critical external variables that have impact on adoption intention through perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use of the digital library. Data was collected from 397 users of an award-winning digital library. The findings show that both perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use are determinants of user acceptance of digital libraries. In addition, interface characteristics and individual differences affect perceived ease of use, while organizational context influences both perceived ease of use and perceived usefulness of digital libraries.

IJHCS 2002 Volume 57 Issue 4

Introduction: interactive graphical communication BIB 243-246
  Patrick G. T. Healey; N. Hari Narayanan; John Lee; Yasuhiro Katagiri
Animation: can it facilitate? BIBA 247-262
  Barbara Tversky; Julie Bauer Morrison; Mireille Betrancourt
Graphics have been used since ancient times to portray things that are inherently spatiovisual, like maps and building plans. More recently, graphics have been used to portray things that are metaphorically spatiovisual, like graphs and organizational charts. The assumption is that graphics can facilitate comprehension, learning, memory, communication and inference. Assumptions aside, research on static graphics has shown that only carefully designed and appropriate graphics prove to be beneficial for conveying complex systems. Effective graphics conform to the Congruence Principle according to which the content and format of the graphic should correspond to the content and format of the concepts to be conveyed. From this, it follows that animated graphics should be effective in portraying change over time. Yet the research on the efficacy of animated over static graphics is not encouraging. In cases where animated graphics seem superior to static ones, scrutiny reveals lack of equivalence between animated and static graphics in content or procedures; the animated graphics convey more information or involve interactivity. Animations of events may be ineffective because animations violate the second principle of good graphics, the Apprehension Principle, according to which graphics should be accurately perceived and appropriately conceived. Animations are often too complex or too fast to be accurately perceived. Moreover, many continuous events are conceived of as sequences of discrete steps. Judicious use of interactivity may overcome both these disadvantages. Animations may be more effective than comparable static graphics in situations other than conveying complex systems, for example, for real time reorientations in time and space.
Drawing in aphasia: moving towards the interactive BIBA 263-277
  Carol Sacchett
This paper reviews the literature on the use of drawing to communicate by people whose language is restricted due to aphasia. The advantages of drawing over other forms of non-verbal communication for this population are detailed, followed by discussion of different approaches to communicative drawing with reference to descriptive reports, treatment studies and review papers. The two main approaches differ in their view of drawing either as an alternative to speech or as an augmentative tool in multimodal communication. In the former approach the focus is on drawing skill or quality. Successful transmission of messages is the goal, and this depends on the production of recognizable drawings. In contrast, in the latter approach quality of drawings is secondary to its value as an interactive medium. The focus is on interpersonal aspects of communication and drawing is used alongside other modalities as a medium of social connectedness. The main principles of interactive drawing are discussed with examples from recent therapy studies. These are: the importance of drawing "economically" rather than producing "good" drawings; the contribution of the communication partner in facilitating, developing and maintaining a shared interaction; and the importance of using interactive drawing within natural communication contexts, in particular conversation.
Multimedia design for communication of dynamic information BIBA 279-315
  N. Hari Narayanan; M. Hegarty
Computer-based multimedia technologies allow designers to construct interactive and animated graphical presentations to communicate dynamic information. The conventional wisdom is that such presentations are more effective than printed materials. This paper presents research that critically examines this assumption. Design guidelines and principles were derived from a cognitive process model of multimodal comprehension. These guidelines and principles were used to create several expository presentations in two domains -- the concrete domain of mechanical systems and the abstract domain of computer algorithms. A series of experiments evaluated the efficacy of these presentations and compared them with other kinds of presentations such as books, CD-ROMs and animations. The experiments also compared computer-based interactive graphical presentations and static printed presentations containing the same information. Experimental results suggest that the communicative efficacy of multimodal presentations is more related to their match with comprehension processes than with the interactivity and dynamism of the presentation media. The results support a model-based approach to the design of multimodal expository presentations of dynamic information. The comprehension model and corresponding design guidance should aid designers in building interactive graphical presentations that are more effective than intuitive designs in communicating dynamic content.
Evolution of interactive graphical representations into a design language: a distributed cognition account BIBA 317-345
  Daniela Giordano
This study investigates the evolution of the graphical representations used to specify information systems in a community of novice designers supported by a shared design memory, adopting the paradigm of distributed cognition. The nature of the relationship between design notations, quality of design and communication is explicated by considering the interplay of actors, representations, design task and an evolving social and cultural context. An account is provided of how meaningful representational features are transmitted and transformed across generations of designers, and combined in a design language that improves design quality and accommodates varied communication needs and interactional constraints. Diffusion and creation of novel representational features start from a process of critical imitation steered by criteria of instrumental utility set by the individual design teams to address both their needs, concerning level of understanding and desired expressiveness of the design, and the socially regulated expectations about what is required in a good design. These tendencies result in an organizational phenomenon according to which the language of the community evolves by incorporating more sophisticated representational modes, i.e. patterns of features that are used in a socially clever way, in particular to reduce the cognitive load involved in interpretation, and to sustain interaction with the instructor during the exam. It is argued that the cognitive fit between the general characteristics of design task and the expressive modalities allowed by the medium used for the design specifications, plus the individual differences between the novice designers are key factors in sustaining the evolution of the language.
Prolegomena of a theory of between-person coordination of speech and gesture BIBA 347-374
  Nobuhiro Furuyama
This paper describes some examples of what is here called between-person coordination of speech and gesture. It attempts to explain the phenomenon in terms of the principles set forth in Growth Point theory (GP theory). McNeill has proposed this to explain what is here contrastively called within-person coordination of speech and gesture. In due course, the advantages of GP theory over the other existing theories of speech-gesture coordination will be discussed, and some implications for interactional graphical communication will be noted.
Graphical representation in graphical dialogue BIBA 375-395
  Patrick G. T. Healey; Nik Swoboda; Ichiro Umata; Yasuhiro Katagiri
This paper explores the influence of communicative interaction on the form of graphical representations. A referential communication task is described which involves exclusively graphical dialogue. In this task subjects communicate about pieces of music by drawing. The drawings produced fall into two basic types: Abstract and Figurative. Three hypotheses are developed about the factors influencing the use of these drawing types: efficiency of production, suitability for the task and level of communicative interaction. Experimental evidence is presented which indicates that the drawing types do not differ in the amount of effort required to produce them. The results indicate that (1) Abstract drawings are more effective than Figurative drawings for comparative tasks and (2) a key constraint on their use is level of direct communicative interaction. It is argued that these observations result from differences in the underlying semantic models of music associated with the drawing types and the consequences these differences have for communicative coordination.

IJHCS 2002 Volume 57 Issue 5

Pushing back: evaluating a new behaviour for the back and forward buttons in web browsers BIBA 397-414
  Andy Cockburn; Bruce Mckenzie; Michael Jasonsmith
The Back button on web browsers is one of the world's most heavily used user interface components, yet its behaviour is commonly misunderstood. This paper describes the evaluation of a "temporal" alternative to the normal "stack-based" behaviour of Back and Forward. The main difference of the temporal scheme is that it maintains a complete list of previously visited pages. The evaluation compares the efficiency of the stack and temporal schemes in an "out of the box" scenario in which participants were asked to use a "new" version of a commercial browser without any explanation of the presence or absence of new features. This scenario allows us to predict the likely usability impact if commercial browsers were released supporting the temporal scheme. The results showed that the relative efficiency of the two schemes differed across different types of navigational task. In particular, the temporal system poorly supported backtracking to parent pages, but performed better for more distant navigation tasks. The temporal scheme also caused extreme usage patterns, with the subjects either solving tasks very efficiently or very inefficiently, depending on whether they used the Back menu. This observation indicates that adaptations of the temporal system that improve the effectiveness of the Back menu may enhance web navigation.
BlueSpace: personalizing workspace through awareness and adaptability BIBA 415-428
  Jennifer Lai; Anthony Levas; Paul Chou; Claudio Pinhanez; Marisa Viveros
This paper reports on research in workplace issues encountered by knowledge workers in cubicle environments, and on BlueSpace, a prototype workspace with the goal of addressing workers' critical needs for privacy, concentration and personalization. To inform the design process, more than 50 on-site interviews with knowledge workers were conducted at six companies ranging from dot.com startups to Fortune 100 corporations. Several common requirements emerged including the need for a sense of control of one's workspace, the ability to create privacy on-demand to improve concentration and minimize unwanted interruptions, as well as in-place support for dyadic interactions. Many other common workplace complaints (e.g. too hot, too cold, too noisy) were found to be derivative of the major requirements for individual control and privacy.
First steps in building a model for the retrieval of court decisions BIBA 429-446
  Marie-Francine Moens; Rik De Busser
The MOSAIC project investigates a retrieval model for court decisions based on structured and unstructured (natural language) information in legal cases. This paper focuses on how relevant information in court decisions can function as a key for retrieval and on the automated construction of case representations. Techniques of automated concept learning and rhetorical structure identification are among the most promising ones.

IJHCS 2002 Volume 57 Issue 6

Visual search strategies and eye movements when searching Chinese character screens BIBA 447-468
  Ravindra S. Goonetilleke; W. C. Lau; Heloisa M. Shih
Most visual search studies have been restricted to alphanumeric stimulus materials. Research related to scanning patterns of Chinese characters is sparse. This study is an attempt to understand the differences and similarities in visual search of Chinese characters having a varying degree of complexity among Hong Kong Chinese, Mainland Chinese and Chinese reading non-Chinese people. Eighteen participants were tested on Chinese character screens with three layouts (row, column, and uniform separation) and two word complexities (high and low). The 18 participants comprised six Hong Kong Chinese, six Mainland Chinese and six non-native Chinese readers. Performance data and eye movement data were recorded. The percent correct and search time were the two performance measures. A new measure, called HV-ratio was developed to characterize eye movements. The results show that Hong Kong Chinese use predominantly horizontal search patterns while the Mainland Chinese change their search pattern depending on the layout presented. Non-native Chinese readers, on the other hand, do not seem to show any preference on scanning strategy for a given layout. Word complexity did not show any significant effect on search time. Potential reasons for these differences and design implications are discussed.
ARKTOS: a knowledge engineering software tool for images BIBA 469-496
  Leen-Kiat Soh; Costas Tsatsoulis
The goal of our ARKTOS project is to build an intelligent knowledge-based system to classify satellite sea ice images. It involves acquiring knowledge from sea ice experts, quantifying such knowledge as computational entities and ultimately building an intelligent classifier. In this paper we describe a two-stage knowledge engineering approach that facilitates explicit knowledge transfer, converting implicit visual cues and cognition of the experts to explicit attributes and rules implemented by the engineers. First, there is a prototyping stage that involves interviewing sea ice experts, transcribing the sessions, identifying descriptors and rules, designing and implementing the knowledge and delivering the prototype. The objective of this stage is to obtain a modestly accurate classification system quickly. Second, there is a refinement stage that involves evaluating the prototype, refining the knowledge base, modifying the design and re-evaluating the improved system. Since the refinement is evaluation-driven, the experts and the engineers are motivated explicitly to improve the knowledge base and are able to communicate with each other using a common, consistent platform. Moreover, since the classification result is immediately available, both sides are able to efficiently assess the correctness of the system. To facilitate the knowledge engineering of the second stage, we have designed and built three Java-based graphical user interfaces: arktosGUI, arktosViewer and arktosEditor. arktosGUI concentrates on feature-based refinement of specific attributes and rules. arktosViewer deals with regional evaluation. arktosEditor has a rule indexing and search mechanism and knowledge base editing capabilities.