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HCI History.

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Presentation on theme: "HCI History."— Presentation transcript:

1 HCI History

2 Note on Historiography
Whig History: History of the winners (today’s perspective) Inevitable technological progress Internalist History of Technology Sole focus on the technology rather than social forces shaping and shaped by the technology Technological determinism: Technology determines history or Progress is driven by technical innovation that follows an inevitable path

3 Brad Meyers Meyers, B. A. (1998). A Brief History of Human Computer Interaction Technology. ACM Interactions, 5(2),


5 The usual suspects WIMP Interfaces (GUI) Hypertext / WWW
Windows, Icons, Mouse, Pointing Direct Manipulation Metaphors Hypertext / WWW Person-to-person computing Communication Collaboration CSCW Instruction

6 What is missing?? “Internalist” history focuses on the functionality and development of technology but lacks recognition of the social and political context that shapes and is shaped by the technologies University research Market and Industry R&D Political forces

7 The technologies But let’s look quickly at the key developments said to set the stage for the emergence of Human-Computer Interaction

8 Innovator: Ivan Sutherland
SketchPad PhD thesis at MIT Hierarchy - pictures & sub-pictures Master picture with instances (i.e., OOP) Icons Copying Light pen input device Recursive operations

9 The Ubiquitous ASR 33 Teletype
ASR: Automatic Send / Receive Store programs on punched paper tape The first direct human-computer interface experience for many in the 1960s About 10 characters per second bps

10 The Ubiquitous Glass Teletype
24 x 80 characters Up to 19,200 bps BPS? Bits per second Construction: Monitor + detachable keyboard Display: x80 or 14x132 character cells, optional 24x132 Character matrix: x9 with descenders Screen size: " diagonal (8" x 4.5" active display) Character set: Complete US ASCII (128 codes) Keys: keys in ANSI X typewriter layout Auxiliary keypad: keys (digits, arrows, function keys) Visual indicators: LEDs Interface: RS-232/V.24, optional 20mA Current Loop Flow control: Xon/Xoff Communication Speeds: 75,110,150,300,600,1200,2400,4800,9600,19200 bps Dimensions: "x18"14.25" (monitor), 3.5"x18"x8" (keyboard) Minimum table depth: " Weight: pounds Source:

11 About Doug Engelbart Invented the mouse
1962 Paper "Conceptual Model for Augmenting Human Intellect" Complexity of problems increasing Need better ways of solving problems Picture of Engelbart from Picture from

12 Augmenting Human Intellect
Advantages of chord keyboards? Disadvantages? Twiddler - combination keyboard and mouse fits into a pocket Jason Hong / James Landay, UC Berkeley,

13 Augmenting Human Intellect
“At SRI in the 1960s we did some experimenting with a foot mouse. I found that it was workable, but my control wasn't very fine and my leg tended to cramp from the unusual posture and task.”

14 Augmenting Human Intellect
Early 3-button mouse Chorded Keyboard

15 Augmenting Human Intellect
First mouse First hypertext First word processing First 2D editing and windows First document version control First groupware (shared screen teleconferencing) First context-sensitive help First distributed client-server Many, many more!

16 Early Personal Computers
1975 IBM 5100 1977 Radio Shack TRS-80 Sept 1975 IBM's Entry Level Systems unit unveils the IBM 5100 Portable Computer. It is a briefcase-size minicomputer with BASIC, 16 KB RAM expandable to 64 KB, tape storage drive holding 204 KB per tape, keyboard, and built-in 5-inch screen. Price: US$ Weight: 55 pounds. Code name during development was Project Mercury. [9] [197.xi] [606.22] [ ] [ ] (Price over US$10,000 [203.10])

17 Early Personal Computers
1997 Apple II 1979 VisiCalc - “killer app” for Apple II 1981 IBM XT/AT

18 The dawn of the PC & GUI Xerox PARC
Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) Established 1970 Bob Taylor heads CSL - Computer Systems Lab Goal: “The Paperless Office” Are we there yet? “Inventing the future” Researchers using their new creations as their own tools - bootstrapping

19 Side note: “invent the future”
“Don’t worry about what anybody else is going to do. The best way to predict the future is to invent it. Really smart people with reasonable funding can do just about anything that doesn’t violate too many of Newton’s Laws!” Is the Best Way to Predict the Future to Invent It? Or to Prevent It? Title of Alan Kay.s Keynote Address for CHI 98: April 18-23, 1998, Los Angeles, CA USA. Alan Kay, in an on Sept 17, 1998 to Peter W. Lount The origin of the quote came from an early meeting in 1971 of PARC, Palo Alto Research Center, folks and the Xerox planners. In a fit of passion I uttered the quote! I said that to the Xerox planners back in They were worrying about what the rest of the world was going to do and the statement was made to get them to understand that as long as we had some top technologists, we didn’t have to worry about what anybody else was going to do -- we could just do it ourselves. And we did.

20 Alan Kay Dynabook - Notebook sized computer loaded with multimedia and can store everything Personal computing Desktop interface Overlapping windows

21 PARC Hardware Milestones
Laser printer 1971 Alto personal computer 1973 808 x 606 raster bitmapped display 3-button mouse, keyboard Ethernet 1973 Merges printing, display and networking Real-time windowing operations (BitBlt) 1973

22 PARC Software Milestones
Bravo WYSIWYG text editor/formatter 1974 Gypsy text editor with GUI and modeless cut and paste editing 1975 Draw drawing program 1975 Superpaint paint program

23 Xerox Star First commercial PC designed for “business professionals” desktop metaphor pointing WYSIWYG high degree of consistency and simplicity First system based on formal usability engineering Paper prototyping and analysis Usability testing and iterative refinement

24 Xerox Star Desktop

25 Xerox Star - 1981 Commercial flop $15k cost closed architecture
lacking key functionality (spreadsheet)

26 Apple Lisa - 1982 Based on ideas of Star
More personal rather than office tool Still $$$ - $10K to $12K Failure

27 Apple Macintosh - 1984 Aggressive pricing Good interface guidelines
$2500 Good interface guidelines Third party applications Great graphics, laser printer

28 Direct Manipulation ‘82 Shneiderman described appeal of rapidly-developing graphically-based interaction object visibility incremental action and rapid feedback reversibility encourages exploration replace language with action syntactic correctness of all actions WYSIWYG, Apple Mac

29 Metaphor Use involves problem-solving or learning to some extent
Relating computing to real-world activity is effective learning mechanism File management on office desktop Financial analysis as spreadsheets The tension between literalism & magic Eject disk or CD on Mac by dragging to trash can

30 Person-to-Person Communications
Enabled by several technologies Ethernet and TCP/IP protocol Personal computer Telephone network and modems And by killer-app software , Instant Messaging, Chat, Bulletin Boards CSCW - conferencing, shared white boards Not quite yet a killer-app Micro-sociological phenomenon are central to successes (and failures)

31 CSCW Computer-Supported Cooperative Work
No longer single user/single system Micro-social aspects are crucial as prominent success but other groupware still not widely used

32 Hypertext Think of information not as linear flow but as interconnected nodes Bush’s MEMEX gave the idea in 1945 Nelson coined term in 1965 Engelbart’s NLS did it in 1965 WWW in ’93 was the real launch

33 Speech / Agents Actions do not always speak louder than words
Interface as mediator or agent Language How good does it need to be? “Tricks”, vocabulary, domains How “human” do we want it to be? (HAL, Bob, PaperClip)

34 Ubiquitous Computing Person is no longer user of single device but occupant of computationally-rich environment "Ubiquitous computing names the third wave in computing, just now beginning. First were mainframes, each shared by lots of people. Now we are in the personal computing era, person and machine staring uneasily at each other across the desktop. Next comes ubiquitous computing, or the age of calm technology, when technology recedes into the background of our lives.” - Marki Weiser, circa 1988

35 Computing is Everywhere, ...
From the desk-top to the set-top to the palm-top to the flip-top to the wrist-top… Dick Tracy ®&© 1999 Tribune Media Services, Inc

36 VR & 3D Interaction Create immersion by
Realistic appearance, interaction, behavior Draw on spatial memory, proprioception, kinesthesis, two-handed interaction

37 Mobile Computing Devices used in a variety of contexts
Employ sensors to understand how user is working with devices Wireless communication PDAs, Cell Phones, GPSs, etc etc etc


39 Note on Historiography
Whig History: History of the winners (today’s perspective) Inevitable technological progress Internalist History of Technology Sole focus on the technology rather than social forces shaping and shaped by the technology Technological determinism: Technology determines history or Progress is driven by technical innovation that follows an inevitable path

40 What’s the point? What’s the point(s) of last discussion?
What’s the point(s) of Chapter 1 of ID? What’s the connection?

41 Study of THE USER (experience)
Rather than the machine

42 The context of emergence of HCI
Why (when) did USERS become so important in computing? When did masses start using important computer systems? Safety critical? Aerospace Astronauts highly trained and very few, infrequent Pilots are MANY and frequent Air Traffic controllers Airline booking agents (distributed, complex, big money)

43 Consumers (entertainment)
Gaming Joystick, TV (Pong), Arcades (Pac Man)

44 (Public) Education The pocket calculator TI 30 (1977)
Display is 8 digits, red LED. Four function, memory, scientific functions. Integrated circuit - Texas Instruments TMC0981.

45 Cold War Decentralization of communication and resources in case of nuclear attack Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) 1960s NSFNet (1980s) Commercial

46 HCI The early field and science
Early HCI emerged out of human factors engineering Focus on sensory-motor operations describing interactions of people and computers such as hand movement and similar physical behaviors.

47 Fitts Law 1954 Field of Experimental Psychology
Model of psychomotor behavior Predicts how fast or accurate a human can aim and move an appendage (like a hand) in a line from rest to a specified target some distance away. Fitts found that movement time (MT) was a logarithmic function of distance (A) for a given target size or width (W) and, similarly, movement time was a logarithmic function of target size for a given distance. The law is given by the equation below: MT = a + b log 2 (2 A/W) , where a and b are regression coefficients.

48 Fitts Law applied to HCI
By the late 1970s, early HCI researchers were applying Fitts law to model human interactions with input mechanisms. Card, S. K., English, W. K., & Burr, B. J. (1978). Evaluation of Mouse, Rate-controlled Isometric Joystick, Step Keys, and Text Keys for Text Selection on a CRT. Ergonomics, 21, Early use of Fitts to describe how well subjects could use input devices (joystick and mouse) to select text on a Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) display

49 The Emerging Field of HCI
mid 1980s HCI researchers had begun to campaign for the acceptance as a legitimate “science” complete with research agenda distinct methods and goals

50 HCI as a “science” Newell 1985
Plenary address of the major HCI conference hosted by the Association for Computing Machinery, CHI ’85 Conference HCI model: Goals, Operators, Methods, and Selection (GOMS) extended cognitive psychology orientations to research on HCI

51 Focus on users Pragmatism is a better philosophical basis for understanding (and studying) HCI than the rationalism that guide conventional and traditional thinking.

52 Naïve conventional model of information flow (rationalist) Human-Computer Interaction
Information flows from person to computer, to person, and so on….

53 From rationalism to pragmatism
The rationalist attitudes concentrate on logic and theory rather than attention to the needs of computer users. Understanding technology as it is situated in the organization of social activities  Pragmatism: knowledge and technology is socially situated. Scientific theories and logic are tools used in a certain social practice. Interface I/O metaphors guide users Desktop, folders, menus,

54 John Gould (1988) "How to Design Usable Systems"
focus on the needs of users from the very start of the project. four simple principles: early and continuous focus on users early and continual testing iterative design as result of testing integrated design, all elements develop constantly and in coordination

55 Interface as a commodity

56 DUE THIS Thursday Project Teams Online Survey (for project teams)
Quick inventory for teaming. Listserve DUE THIS Thursday

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