Describe How The Effectiveness Of HCI May Be Measured?


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Human Computer Interaction, HCI, is concerned with the study, design and evaluation of human-computer systems. The emphasis here is placed on the limitations and abilities of humans as they impact the operation of a system.

The ultimate goal of HCI and the involved human factors methodology is to maximise human safety and optimise operational effectiveness and system performance.

To measure the effectiveness of HCI, the following considerations have to be taken into account:

•How much training is required for users? It should be simple, without having to remember huge amounts of information.

•Are sufficient documentation/ supportive material provided to help the user and can solutions to problems be found within this material? Hints/tips should be readily accessible without the use of hidden shortcuts or hour long searches through help files.

•What kind of errors are users likely to make and how often do they occur?

•Is it possible for users to recover from errors? Are informative, comprehensible error messages provided to help users to recover from errors? Users should be alerted to errors before matters get worse.

•Are special needs of disabled users met through accessibility?

•Are substantial differences between cognitive abilities/ approaches of users likely to affect design, or is the same approach suitable for all?

•Is it possible for users to accomplish tasks at the required speed using the minimal amount of steps?

Usability testing, analysis of user-focused requirements and user profiles will provide answers to these questions and help to determine effectiveness.

Ultimately, an effective HCI system will be easy to learn and understand, provide sufficient, comprehensive help for users to overcome problems and/ or errors and be easily accessible to users of varying abilities/ disabilities. It will also allow users to accomplish any required task at the desired speed.

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