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ACM 24th International Conference on Design of Communication

Fullname:24th International Conference on Design of Communication
Editors:Rob Pierce; John Stamey
Location:Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, USA
Dates:2006-Oct-18 to 2006-Oct-20
Standard No:ISBN: 1-59593-523-1; ACM Order Number: 613060; ACM DL: Table of Contents hcibib: DOC06
Links:Conference Home Page
  1. Workshop 1
  2. Keynote
  3. Documentation analysis
  4. Invited talk 1
  5. Design of communication 1
  6. Design of communication 2
  7. Lunch and rigo award
  8. Documentation usability
  9. Documentation systems
  10. Panel session
  11. Workshop 2
  12. Best practices
  13. Developing documentation and communication 1
  14. Invited talk 3
  15. Developing documentation and communication 2

Workshop 1

Building bridges: connecting research ethics and computer science BIBAFull-Text 1-2
  Thomas L. Honeycutt; David R. Wright
The ethical conduct of research is a cornerstone of modern scientific research. Computer science and the discipline's technological artifacts touch nearly every aspect of modern life, and computer scientists must conduct and report their research in an ethical manner. This workshop will identify four theories that offer guidance for ethical decision making, ad use these theories as a basis for evaluating and discussing a set of ethical dilemmas that researchers in computer science might face.


Knowledge media and meme media architectures from the viewpoint of the phenotype-genotype mapping BIBAFull-Text 3-10
  Yuzuru Tanaka
Media to externalize some knowledge as knowledge resources for their sharing among people across time and space are generally defined as "knowledge media". Distribution of knowledge resources sooner or later forms a huge accumulation of knowledge shared by our society, which activates the reediting and redistribution of knowledge resources, and accelerates their memetic evolution. Meme media are knowledge media with reeding and redistribution functions. Each knowledge consists of its code and mode. The code defines the knowledge itself, while the mode defines the presentation details. For each externalized knowledge, we call its code its genotype, and its external representation including its mode its phenotype. Electronic information media have enabled us to edit multimedia documents through direct manipulation on a WYSIWYG editor. We may consider a similar editor to edit not only multimedia documents but also compound documents with embedded tools and services. The editing denotes the recombination of contents on some medium through direct manipulation. Each recombination of contents should be represented as a phenotype manipulation that defines the corresponding recombination of the genotype representation. In this paper, we will propose a new interpretation of knowledge media and meme media. This will clarify the essential mechanism from the view point of the "phenotype-genotype mapping". We will use this interpretation to review the meme media architecture, and to reformulate how the meme-media architecture can be applied to the Web to make it work as a meme pool.

Documentation analysis

Why don't people read the manual? BIBAFull-Text 11-18
  David G. Novick; Karen Ward
Few users of computer applications seek help from the documentation. This paper reports the results of an empirical study of why this is so and examines how, in real work, users solve their usability problems. Based on in-depth interviews with 25 subjects representing a varied cross-section of users, we find that users do avoid using both paper and online help systems. Few users have paper manuals for the most heavily used applications, but none complained about their lack. Online help is more likely to be consulted than paper manuals, but users are equally likely to report that they solve their problem by asking a colleague or experimenting on their own. Users cite difficulties in navigating the help systems, particularly difficulties in finding useful search terms, and disappointment in the level of explanation found.
A method for risk mitigation during the requirements phase for multimedia software systems BIBAFull-Text 19-22
  Kohl Witmer; Rhoda Baggs Koss; Tamas Kasza
The Multimedia Requirements Method for Easy Risk Mitigation (MURMER) is proposed. This method represents requirements for multimedia document types containing audio, video, image or textual data. MURMER aims to increase the overall transparency and reliability of representations as well as provide a straightforward and clear understanding of the whole requirement pane of the final product. It also aims to decrease risk levels associated to the requirements phase and improves overall completeness. The feasibility of the proposed method is shown in a Composting 101 tutorial example created in Macromedia Flash and corresponding MS Powerpoint documents. MURMER investigation is compared to other UML-driven schemes. Its efficiency is based on simplicity and completeness. It is also effective as a risk mitigator.
Searching documents on the intranet using PDA BIBAFull-Text 23-28
  Carlos J. Costa; Manuela Aparicio
The problem of searching the web by using small devices such as PDA is a subject of research pursued by academics but is also an important concern from industry. Here we suggest that document genre may contribute to the reduction of processing and memory burden when searching information on an Intranet. Document genre may also contribute to ease the access to information. It is in this context that we analyzed in what extent document genres are employed by users to describe digital resources, in order to be displayed in small display device. Based in the results of our research, we also propose a new architecture for an information system.
The effects of reading goals in hypertext reading BIBAFull-Text 29-34
  Aristidis Protopsaltis; Vassiliki Bouki
The present study examined the influence of different reading goals on reading in a hypertext environment. The study focused on text based electronic documents. The study was an independent samples design experiment with three different conditions. Ninety participants read the hypertext allocated into three different conditions and then, all answered the same set of questions. The results show that reading goals did not influence reading times, comprehension scores, and amount of visited links. The data also revealed two factors that influence hyperlink selection: coherence, and location.

Invited talk 1

Games that do not exist communication design beyond the current limits BIBAFull-Text 35-42
  Klaus P. Jantke
The digital games industry has grown to the size of the film industry and is going to leave the box office far behind. Computers with their advanced graphics capabilities have contributed to the immersive interactive experience which attracts many to spend more leisure time playing digital games than watching television. The available CPU power of home computers and notebook PCs is setting the stage for game AI; console development shows a similar trend. Digital games and their potential social impact are subject to a heated debate worldwide which is fueled by tragic events such as the 1999 deadly shooting at the Columbine Highschool, Littleton, CO, USA, or the 2002 amok run at the Gutenberg Highschool in Erfurt, Germany. This debate is getting even more controversial when digital games such as the Super Columbine Massacre RPG enter the stage. Clearly, digital games may be seen as entertainment media. Established approaches of media research apply. Digital games must be also seen as IT application systems. They are, in particular, systems of Artificial Intelligence. The invited talk addresses issues of digital games' impact on social behavior. Emphasis is put on an interdisciplinary approach which is new, to some extent, to digital games studies in media and communication science. As presentation agenda, some list of problems is identified. For every problem, there will be undertaken the endeavor of developing new ideas of game playing and designing novel games such that the identified problem changes or, in the best case, possibly disappears.

Design of communication 1

Chains and ecologies: methodological notes toward a communicative-mediational model of technologically mediated writing BIBAFull-Text 43-50
  Clay Spinuzzi; William Hart-Davidson; Mark Zachry
Studies of knowledge work tend to take one of two research foci: either on communication (the transactional, intersubjective exchange of information, thoughts, writing, or speech among participants, performed in serial chains) or mediation (the nonsequential, implicit aspects of artifacts that serve to guide and constrain workers' activities). In this paper, we propose a methodological framework that coordinates the perspectives.
Designing aural information architectures BIBAFull-Text 51-58
  Davide Bolchini; Sebastiano Colazzo; Paolo Paolini; Daniele Vitali
Nowadays websites use, above all, the "visual channel" to communicate content, functionality and navigation/interaction capabilities. Users who, permanently or temporarily, cannot use their eyes to interact with an application (not only visually impaired but also people who cannot look at the screen while interacting) need a new paradigm of interaction, based on an "aural" access to information. Current technological approaches for developing "aural hypertexts" (such as speech markup languages, or code optimization techniques for screen-readers) provide technical solutions to transform a visual interaction into an aural one, failing to support adequately the overall design process. This paper presents an overview of critical design issues to consider when conceiving aural hypertexts, namely when designing "aural" information architecture, navigation and interaction features. Examples of possible "aural" design solutions are also discussed to support specific requirements. The work is based upon real-life project experience in both designing web applications and developing applications for visually-impaired users.
Designing communication: considering the dynamics of the discipline BIBAFull-Text 59-63
  Ashley Williams; Mary Moore
Over the past ten years, technical communicators, theorists and practitioners alike, have been acknowledging change and growth in the field. For example, what once was considered merely writing about technical subjects or objects now encompasses writing the technology itself, in that we are designing complex systems to facilitate the work we do. As the technical communication discipline grows, we report on select trends in the SIGDOC proceedings in recent years to examine the widening of boundaries of the discipline. By doing so, we aim to provide context and situation for the ever-changing role of the technical communicator.

Design of communication 2

Taming the inaccessible web BIBAFull-Text 64-69
  Simon Harper; Sean Bechhofer; Darren Lunn
Visually impaired users are hindered in their efforts to access the largest repository of electronic information in the world, namely the World Wide Web (Web). A visually impaired users information and presentation requirements are different from a sighted user in that they are highly egocentric and non-visual. These requirements can become problems in that the Web is visually centric with regard to presentation and information order/layout, this can (and does) hinder users who need presentation-agnostic access to information. Finding semantic information already encoded directly into documents can help to alleviate these problems and support users who wish to understand the content as opposed to the presentation and order of the information. If this is to happen in the "real world", however, authors must incur no "design overhead" when creating documents. Our solution, Structural-Semantics for Accessibility and Device Independence (SADIe) involves building ontologies of Cascading Style-Sheets (CSS) and using those ontologies to transform Web pages. In this way we find that we can indeed "tame" inaccessible Web pages.
Visualizing writing activity as knowledge work: challenges & opportunities BIBAFull-Text 70-77
  William Hart-Davidson; Clay Spinuzzi; Mark Zachry
Digital environments enable distributed work. Though they pose challenges for research, they also provide affordances for addressing these difficulties including opportunities to capture and visualize writing activity in significant detail. This paper surveys sources of visualizations of writing processes and practices, focusing on attempts to deal with writing as a distributed activity. We then ask: what qualities of visualizations seem desirable and help to render writing visible as knowledge work for the purpose of providing mediational support to writers.
Towards a design attitude for information architecture BIBAFull-Text 78-82
  Ward M. Eagen; Ojelanki Ngwenyama
This paper examines the relationship between Gilles Deleuze's philosophical program and the design attitude. We attempt to extract from the Deleuze program design patterns which we operationalize and apply to web design.

Lunch and rigo award

ACM SIGDOC Rigo award co-recipients, 2006 BIBFull-Text 83
  Dixie Goswami; Carolyn R. Miller

Documentation usability

What users say they want in documentation BIBAFull-Text 84-91
  David G. Novick; Karen Ward
While earlier work provided a partial view of users' preferences about manuals, for most users in most work contexts the important question remains open: What do users want in documentation? This paper presents the results of a study in which a diverse cross-section of 25 users was interviewed in depth about their needs and preferences with respect to software help systems, whether printed or on-line, that they use at work. The study's participants indicated that they preferred documentation, whether online or printed, that is easy to navigate, provides explanations at an appropriate level of technical detail, enables finding as well as solving problems through examples and scenarios, and is complete and correct. These preferences give rise to difficult issues, including a possibly inherent tension between coverage and precision, and variation among users with respect to desired level of technical complexity of explanation.
Handling objects: a scenario based approach BIBAFull-Text 92-98
  Thomas George Kannampallil; John M., III Daughtry
We report on the development of a tool which supports software programmers in programming to an interface by providing just in time (JIT) solutions. The development of the tool was grounded in a scenario-based analysis of programming scenarios and a procedural task analysis of these scenarios. The scenarios were analyzed using the theoretical perspectives of mental models and the production paradox of the user. Based on the scenarios and analysis a new refactoring and a tool were developed to support software programmers.
Usability: reconciling theory and practice BIBAFull-Text 99-104
  Amy Tracy Wells
The results of usability verbalizations gathered using a talk aloud protocol during a heuristic evaluation with persons knowledgeable about usability are reported. An explicit problem in system design is the application and subsequent utilization of heuristic evaluations in conjunction with talk aloud protocols [1, 4]. Though a common practice, the verbalizations themselves may not conform to Ericsson and Simon's [5] protocol, which is often cited as justification and is perhaps the most heavily cited process-tracing method. The difficulty is that Nielsen's heuristic evaluation [10, 13], with which the protocol is often paired, specifically requires Type 3 verbalizations - data that is deemed unreliable by Ericsson and Simon. A different theory, which considers the attributes of the individual and is also from cognitive science and Simon [5], is suggested to reconcile the theory with the practice of verbal protocols.

Documentation systems

A framework for transforming structured analysis and design artifacts to UML BIBAFull-Text 105-112
  Terrence P. Fries
The Unified Modeling Language (UML) has become the de facto standard for modeling the architecture and behavior of an object-oriented software system. However, many legacy systems have been documented using non-object structured analysis and structured design. This paper proposes a framework to convert a data flow diagram and an entity relationship diagram into UML artifact, including a use case diagram, sequence diagrams, and a class diagram. The new UML model can be used by analysts or computer aided software engineering tools to implement new object-oriented system. The set of rules for transformation is tested on a structured analysis and design example.
Recovering conceptual models from web applications BIBAFull-Text 113-120
  Giuseppe Antonio Di Lucca; Damiano Distante; Mario Luca Bernardi
This paper proposes a reverse engineering approach for abstracting conceptual user-centered models from existing Web applications to re-document them at a high level of abstraction and from a user perspective.
   The recovered models are specified by referring to the Ubiquitous Web Application (UWA) design methodology. UWA models are able to describe the structure of the application contents, the semantic relations among contents, the different views on contents the application offers to users, and the navigation paths and the navigation nodes used to present contents to users.
   The approach exploits existing reverse engineering methods and tools to extract fine grained structural information from the analyzed applications and abstracts UWA models from them.
   The architecture of a tool to support the reverse engineering approach is described and the results from some preliminary experiments are discussed.
ICODE: enabling the static checking of programs and their documentation BIBAFull-Text 121-128
  S. N. I. Mount; R. M. Newman; R. J. Low
We describe ICODE an intermediate language for a static checking system, which we claim is capable of representing documents and code from many different source languages. We describe a method for supporting our claims and sketch a proof that an exemplar block-structured language has a semantics-preserving translations to ICODE.

Panel session

Research issues in the design of communication BIBFull-Text 129-130
  John Stamey; David Novick; Clay Spinuzz; Brad Mehlenbacher

Workshop 2

Workshop: communicating design patterns with TRIZ BIBAFull-Text 131-133
  John W. Stamey; Ellen Domb
This work will present elements of Genrich Altshuller's Theory of Inventive Problem Solving, also known as TRIZ, and use them to describe the structural patterns found in the Gang of Four's Design Patterns.

Best practices

Using aspect-oriented PHP to implement crosscutting concerns in a collaborative web system BIBAFull-Text 134-141
  Otavio Augusto Lazzarini Lemos; Daniel Carnio Junqueira; Marco Aurelio Graciotto Silva; Renata Pontin de Mattos Fortes; John Stamey
Aspect-Oriented Programming (AOP) is a new technology that was proposed to improve separation of concerns in software development. AOP's main focus is to use aspect modules to implement concerns that would be generally scattered across the system and tangled with other modules (crosscutting concerns). Although much research has focused on AOP's application to traditional software development, little has been done towards its application to Web development. Aspect-oriented PHP (aoPHP) is an addition to PHP that allows the use of AOP in the Web development context. In this paper we describe an application of aoPHP to show that AOP can also be effectively used in the Web development context. In particular, we have implemented two crosscutting concerns in a collaborative Web system named CoTeia: the access control and the version control functionalities. Furthermore, we discuss how AOP can enhance the design of Web applications by reasoning on the refactored system.
Researching proposal development: accounting for the complexity of designing persuasive texts BIBAFull-Text 142-148
  Mark Zachry; Clay Spinuzzi; William Hart-Davidson
Formal accounts of how proposals are prepared in the contemporary workplace are scarce. In particular, researchers have published very few reports based on structured studies of proposal writing. This paper offers an overview of the current state of our knowledge about proposal writing in the contemporary workplace. Drawing upon data from a case study, the paper then advances an argument for the field to develop an increasingly sophisticated understanding of proposal development as a complex information gathering and design activity.
Integration of a 2D legacy GIS, legacy simulations, and legacy databases into a 3D geographic simulation BIBAFull-Text 149-156
  Makoto Ohigashi; Zhen-Sheng Guo; Yuzuru Tanaka
Legacy application systems have been widely used by user communities, and by individual users. They are currently providing a variety of functions required by system development requirements. For the development of a new 3D system using such legacy systems, we need both (i) the migration of legacy systems into a new 3D system environment, and (ii) interoperations among these systems. This paper proposes a framework for the ad hoc integration of a 2D legacy GIS, legacy simulators, and legacy databases, which are not a priori assumed to be integrated with each other. For this purpose, we first propose a mechanism to migrate a 2D legacy system with its GUI into a 3D environment. This mechanism is based on a special coordinate transformation for both the texture mapping and the event dispatching. It enables us to use a 3D terrain model with a shadow copy of a 2D legacy GIS. As for legacy geographic simulators and legacy databases without any GUI, we provide them with their proxy objects. These proxy objects can interoperate with each other, and also with the shadow copy of a 2D legacy GIS through their slot connections. As a result, our approach enables us to dynamically integrate multiple independent legacy simulators and/or legacy databases with a 2D legacy GIS simply through the composition of their 3D display objects.

Developing documentation and communication 1

Designing help topics for use with text-to-speech BIBAFull-Text 157-163
  Aidan Kehoe; Ian Pitt
Speech technology can be used to provide online help to users in situations where visual display of online help is not possible, or has some display-related limitations. Presenting help material in this manner can also complement traditional online help systems. To date, most online help material has been developed with the assumption that the material will be read. This paper proposes a number of guidelines to assist in the creation and testing of help material that may be presented to users via speech synthesis engines. The paper also provides a brief overview of an on-going project that provides online help using speech technology.
Blending system and human text in a technical communication genre BIBAFull-Text 164-171
  David W. Marlow
Taking a textually oriented organizational approach to genre analysis using Yates and Orlikowski's [10] 5W1H approach, this paper explores and illuminates a widely used, but under-researched genre of organizational communication: the technical trouble ticket. Particular emphasis is place on the unique role the automated system plays in the genre.
   Trouble tickets are used in customer contact centers to communicate and archive information, enabling repair work both inside and outside the organization. This paper has two main aims. The first is to open discussion on a common genre of electronic communication which is under-represented in the literature. The second is to explore the systemic coordination of human-generated text which enables one specific contact center to meet both physical repair and rhetorical goals.
   This paper may be of interest to researchers in genre analysis, organizational documentation, Computer Supported Collaborative Work (CSCW), and HCI.
Authoring technical documentation using a generic document model BIBAFull-Text 172-179
  Ingo Stock; Michael Weber
As modern technical products like cars become more and more sophisticated, there is an increasing demand for a new type of technical documentation, for the owners and in particular for repair and maintenance staff. To achieve this goal the instructions should be visualized by technologies adding dynamic information as a further dimension to the so far static information. A potential technology is Augmented Reality that makes it easier to understand the operation to be carried out. The superimposed and animated action becomes an additional information carrier. However, this makes high demands on the authoring process. The creation process of technical documentation is an expensive and time-consuming task especially for complex products. To make this process more cost-efficient computerized support is required. In the future the basis for all documentation will be a generic document model. This model includes all work steps, e.g. in the context of a repair manual, covering all cars of a type series. The adaptation of the manual to the particular product will be realized by the computer system at runtime. The availability of an adequate authoring environment is a prerequisite for the deployment of technical documentations based on new technologies in the future. We present the concept for a generic document model and an authoring environment based on the separation of content from representation. It provides a creation framework for the document model, the included workflows and visualizations, and automatically adapts documentations to the real world.

Invited talk 3

User notification in taxonomy based digital libraries BIBAFull-Text 180-187
  H. Belhaj-Frej; P. Rigaux; N. Spyratos
We consider a publish/subscribe system for digital libraries which continuously evaluates queries over a large repository containing document descriptions. The subscriptions, the query expressions and the document descriptions, all rely on a taxonomy that is a hierarchically organized set of keywords, or terms. The digital library supports insertion, update and removal of a document. Each of these operations is seen as an event that must be notified only to those users whose subscriptions match the document's description. The paper addresses the problem of efficiently supporting the notification process, and makes contributions in two directions: (a) definition of a formal model for the publish/subscribe process; (b) proposal of a semi-lattice structure for subscriptions allowing the filtering out of non matching subscriptions. Experimental results that show the cost benefits obtained by our approach are presented in the full paper [6].

Developing documentation and communication 2

Designing suited interactions for a document management system handling localized documents BIBAFull-Text 188-195
  Patrick Etcheverry; Christophe Marquesuzaa; Sandrine Corbineau
This paper presents an approach for interaction design based on the specificity of the information involved in the interaction. The contribution is intended for application designers who wish to widen the traditional principles of design with a renovated view allowing the interactions of the future system to be imagined. The broad lines of this approach are described thanks to a prototype. The experimentation area considers a localized corpus where space criteria are used as guidelines in order to design interactions of the associated document management system.
Research ethics and computer science: an unconsummated marriage BIBAFull-Text 196-201
  David R. Wright
The ethical conduct of research is a cornerstone of modern scientific research. Computer science and the discipline's technological artifacts touch nearly every aspect of modern life, and computer scientists must conduct and report their research in an ethical manner. This paper examines a small selection of potential ethical dilemmas researchers in this discipline face, and discusses how ethical concerns may be addressed in these situations. The paper concludes with an overview of other areas of ethical concern and a look to the future development of a code for ethical computer science research.
Interactive applications for communicational situations: assets of genre and verbal interactions BIBAFull-Text 202-209
  Philippe Lopisteguy; Pantxika Dagorret; Marion Latapy
This paper deals with interactive applications design whose main function is to convey information. We aim at promoting genre notion as well as verbal interaction properties in such applications design. We state that genre is inherent to any communication situation. It carries an intention and defines communication structures that are shared by communication transmitter and recipient. In order to facilitate the specification of these communication structures, we adopt verbal interactions' point of view. Then we propose, by the means of a model, an integrated view of the concepts that derive from the two previous areas. We propose derived interaction-centered design recommendations and present design elements of an experimentation in which our approach has been applied.
Documenting aspect-oriented PHP (AOPHP) BIBAFull-Text 210-213
  John W., Jr. Stamey; Bryan T. Saunders
This paper describes the process for documenting programs using Aspect-Oriented PHP through AOPHPdoc. We discuss some of the problems involved in documenting Aspect-Oriented programs, solutions to these problems, and the creation of documentation with AOPHPdoc. A survey of programmers found no preference for Javadoc-styled documentation over the colored-coded AOPHP documentation.