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Processes of Design First lecture: Interactive System Design 3 October 2003 William Newman.

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1 Processes of Design First lecture: Interactive System Design 3 October 2003 William Newman

2 Processes of Design: Overview Method: Explore principles Study and discuss designs Learn and apply methods. Goal: gain an understanding all of the key steps in the process of designing an interactive system.

3 My background PhD (Imperial College) in Computer Science, 1968 Six years at Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, 1973-79 15 years at Xerox Research Centre Europe (Cambridge) 1987-2002 Mostly focused on designing experimental interactive software systems and on design methodology research Now working as an independent consultant Plus occasional teaching

4 Todays Lectures Design What is it Examples to discuss Are there underlying principles? Defining the design problem Looking ahead…

5 What are Interactive Systems? And what does it mean to design them?

6 What is design? Herb Simon: Everyone designs who devises courses of action aimed at changing existing situations into preferred ones. Designing material artefacts is like Prescribing remedies to a sick patient Devising a new sales plan for a company Finding ones way around a traffic jam…

7 What have we designed recently?

8 Even the Greats get it wrong! Rashtrapati Bhavan -- Edwin Lutyens Viceroys Palace

9 Alto: forerunner of todays PC (1974) 1 Mhz processor 64Kbytes RAM 2 Mbyte disk yet… 5 Mbit Ethernet 808-line display 60 ppm laser printer WYSIWYG text editor, graphics editors, windowed desktop… See www.digibarn.com

10 The Bravo Word Processor Alto-based Multi-font, almost WYSIWYG Piece Tables No menus or targets! Type i to insert, d to delete, e to select all, etc. The edit problem Exposed the Modes problem Direct forerunner of Word

11 The Big Bushy Tree of PC software ancestry Paths of design knowledge transfer See http://www.digibarn.com/stories/desktop-history/index.htmlhttp://www.digibarn.com/stories/desktop-history/index.html

12 Forget-Me-Not (Xerox Research Cambridge, 1993)

13 Whats involved in design? Recalling Herb Simon: Everyone designs who devises courses of action aimed at changing existing situations into preferred ones. Involving… Satisficing Finding alternative solutions Hierarchic subdivision Simulation

14 Modelling what designers do Creative thought involves trial-and-error and selection See D. T. Campbell on Blind Variation and Selective Retention (1960) known solutions reject retain heuristic test

15 What this means for designers of interactive systems As designers, we need to know: How to define and subdivide problems Existing solutions and how [well] they work Heuristics for varying existing solutions to solve new problems How to evaluate solutions empirically How to predict outcomes analytically As researchers, we need to make advances in all of these.

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