Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 31

Usability Related Abstracts

31 Requirements Gathering for Improved Software Usability and the Potential for Usage-Centred Design

Authors: Kholod J. Alotaibi, Andrew M. Gravell

Abstract:

Usability is an important software quality that is often neglected at the design stage. Although methods exist to incorporate elements of usability engineering, there is a need for more balanced usability focused methods that can enhance the experience of software usability for users. In this regard, the potential for Usage-Centered Design is explored with respect to requirements gathering and is shown to lead to high software usability besides other benefits. It achieves this through its focus on usage, defining essential use cases, by conducting task modeling, encouraging user collaboration, refining requirements, and so on. The requirements gathering process in UgCD is described in detail.

Keywords: Computer Science, Usability, requirements gathering, usage-centred design

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30 Delineato: Designing Distraction-Free GUIs

Authors: Fernando Miguel Campos, Fernando Jesus Aguiar Campos, Pedro Filipe Campos

Abstract:

A large amount of software products offer a wide range and number of features. This is called featurities or creeping featurism and tends to rise with each release of the product. Feautiris often adds unnecessary complexity to software, leading to longer learning curves and overall confusing the users and degrading their experience. We take a look to a new design approach tendency that has been coming up, the so-called “What You Get Is What You Need” concept that argues that products should be very focused, simple and with minimalistic interfaces in order to help users conduct their tasks in distraction-free ambiances. This is not as simple to implement as it might sound and the developers need to cut down features. Our contribution illustrates and evaluates this design method through a novel distraction-free diagramming tool named Delineato Pro for Mac OS X in which the user is confronted with an empty canvas when launching the software and where tools only show up when really needed.

Keywords: HCI, User Interface, Usability, diagramming

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29 An Analysis and Design of Mobile Payment System Based on NFC Technology

Authors: Zubair Ahmed Shaikh, Shafiq Ur Rehman

Abstract:

This research provides the comparative study of different mobile payment system and proposes an efficient solution of mobile payment system. The research involves discovering how the mobile payment methods can be used and implemented keeping user and system interaction under consideration. The implementation of Nielsen’s heuristic and universal design principles enhanced the user’s interaction design and made the system more appropriate, understandable and visible to the end user. The design of application is greatly affected by the user driven factors. These factors help in the efficiency of the application usage.

Keywords: M-Commerce, Usability, mobile payment system, near field communication

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28 Identifying Mitigation Plans in Reducing Usability Risk Using Delphi Method

Authors: Suhaimi Bin Ibrahim, Mohd Naz’ri Mahrin, Jayaletchumi T. Sambantha Moorthy

Abstract:

Most quality models have defined usability as a significant factor that leads to improving product acceptability, increasing user satisfaction, improving product reliability, and also financially benefiting companies. Usability is also the best factor that acts as a balance for both the technical and human aspects of a software product, which is an important aspect in defining quality during software development process. A usability risk can be defined as a potential usability risk factor that a chosen action or activity may lead to a possible loss or an undesirable outcome. This could impact the usability of a software product thereby contributing to negative user experiences and causing a possible software product failure. Hence, it is important to mitigate and reduce usability risks in the software development process itself. By managing possible involved usability risks in software development process, failure of software product could be reduced. Therefore, this research uses the Delphi method to identify mitigation plans to reduce potential usability risks. The Delphi method is conducted with seven experts from the field of risk management and software development.

Keywords: Risk management, Usability, risk mitigation, usability risk, delphi study

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27 An Analysis of Brand-Building Characteristics in the Iran Airline Websites

Authors: Pedram Behyar, Zahra Bayat

Abstract:

The internet and web are changing ways of “far reaching scope and potential for transformation of the marketing functions”. The web is developing in a faster rate than any previous new communication medium. The website of destination has become a crucial branding channel, that is why all businesses are changing their way to communicate with their customers to encounter their needs and wants in better ways. Website provides numerous opportunities for businesses to strengthen their relationship with their customers. One of these opportunities is website component that enables internet users to make two-way communication with the businesses.

Keywords: Marketing Communication, Brand Image, Usability, responsiveness, privacy and security, personalization and customization, customer online web experience

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26 Improving Usability of e-Government for the Elderly

Authors: Tamas Molnar

Abstract:

Electronic government systems are currently in the same development stage as e-commerce applications were about in the late 1990s. Wide adoption by the majority of population is near, as such services are not only more and more desired by the users, but also strongly advocated and pushed by the state, as a means to increase effectiveness and cut expenses at the same time. Diffusion is however hampered by the low motivation caused by usability issues which will cause more and more frustration as the general population ages. Usability centred design is essential when creating such services. Elderly users, who have statistically the least experience, have the most problems, and therefore reject unusable systems first. The goal of our research was to find a way to map the needs of the elderly and create guidelines for the design of electronic government systems which are usable for the whole population. The first phase of our research, started mid-2009, was centred on the idea to gather information about the needs of the target group, in both Germany and Hungary with over 70 participants. This was done with the help of scenarios, interviews and questionnaires. The supplied data enabled to choose an eGovernment system for tests on the target group. Tests conducted in Germany and Hungary were based on the design and functions of the German electronic ID card, in the native languages. Scenarios mirroring common, every day transactions requiring an identification procedure were used. The obtained results allowed us to develop a generalised solution, the IGUAN guideline. This guideline makes a standardised approach to the usability improvement process possible. It contains the special requirements of elderly users, and a catalogue of criteria, which helps to develop an application in line with the set requirements. The third phase of our research was used a proof of concept for the IGUAN. The guideline was evaluated and tested with an iterative prototyping. The successful completion of this phase indicates that the IGUAN can be used to measurably increase the acceptance of e-government systems by elderly users. We could therefore demonstrate that improvements in the interface make e-government application possible which are perceived useful and easy to use by elderly users. These improvements will measurably increase the user motivation and experience. This can however only be achieved with a structured design process, and requires a framework which takes the requirements of the elderly users into account.

Keywords: e-Government, Usability, acceptance, guidelines

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25 Digital System Design for Strategic Improvement Planning in Education: A Socio-Technical and Iterative Design Approach

Authors: Fatih Demir, Neeley Current, Kenneth Haggerty, Blake Naughton, Isa Jahnke

Abstract:

Educational systems seek reform using data-intensive continuous improvement processes known as strategic improvement plans (SIPs). Schools turn to digital systems to monitor, analyze and report SIPs. One technical challenge of these digital systems focuses on integrating a highly diverse set of data sources. Another challenge is to create a learnable sociotechnical system to help administrators, principals and teachers add, manipulate and interpret data. This study explores to what extent one particular system is usable and useful for strategic planning activities and whether intended users see the benefit of the system achieve the goal of improving workflow related to strategic planning in schools. In a three-phase study, researchers used sociotechnical design methods to understand the current workflow, technology use, and processes of teachers and principals surrounding their strategic improvement planning. Additionally, design review and task analysis usability methods were used to evaluate task completion, usability, and user satisfaction of the system. The resulting socio-technical models illustrate the existing work processes and indicate how and at which places in the workflow the newly developed system could have an impact. The results point to the potential of the system but also indicate that it was initially too complicated for use. However, the diverse users see the potential benefits, especially to overcome the diverse set of data sources, and that the system could fill a gap for schools in planning and conducting strategic improvement plans.

Keywords: Software Development, Education Reform, Usability, continuous improvement process, strategic improvement planning, sociotechnical design

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24 Challenges in Promoting Software Usability and Applying Principles of Usage-Centred Design in Saudi Arabia

Authors: Kholod J. Alotaibi, Andrew M. Gravell

Abstract:

A study was conducted in which 212 software developers in higher education institutions in Saudi Arabia were surveyed to gather an indication of their understanding of the concept of usability, their acceptance of its importance, and to see how well its principles are applied. Interviews were then held with 20 of these developers, and a demonstration of Usage-Centred Design was attempted, a highly usability focused software development methodology, at one select institution for its redesign of an e-learning exam system interface during the requirements gathering phase. The study confirms the need to raise awareness of usability and its importance, and for Usage-Centred Design to be applied in its entirety, also need to encourage greater consultation with potential end-users of software and collaborative practices. The demonstration of Usage-Centred Design confirmed its ability to capture usability requirements more completely and precisely than would otherwise be the case, and hence its usefulness for developers concerned with improving software usability. The concluding discussion delves on the challenges for promoting usability and Usage-Centred Design in light of the research results and findings and recommendations are made for the same.

Keywords: Saudi Arabia, Usability, usage-centred, applying principles of usage-centred

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23 An Empirical Study of Factors that Impact Government E-Services Acceptance by Citizens: Case Study from UAE

Authors: Emad Bataineh, Sara Al-Mutawa

Abstract:

The primary focus of this study is to investigate and identify the perceptions of potential end users relating to factors which impact on e-services acceptance. Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) has been adopted in this study as it can be extended when technologies are introduced. This research validates the developed TAM model and evaluates the variance of the outcome variable (acceptance of e-services). Five factors were adopted as determinants of acceptance of e-services: ease of use, security, trust, web skills, and language. The study was undertaken in the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA) in the UAE. A quantitative survey methodology was adopted in this study, which surveyed 466 customers who use the GDRFA e-services. The overall findings revealed that security language, web skills and support significantly affected ease of use and perceived usefulness. However, the trust doesn’t affect the ease of use. Further, ease of use significantly affects intention to use and perceived usefulness while in turn intention to use was influenced by perceived usefulness. This study offers an understanding of people’s adoption of e-government services with the help of established theories such as TAM and various factors that influence the e-government adoption with reference to UAE.

Keywords: e-Service, Usability, e-government portal, TAM model

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22 Assessing the Usability and Accessibility of Turkey E-Government Websites

Authors: Yakup Akgül, Kemal Vatansever

Abstract:

E-Government services offer citizens an easy way to accomplish their work anytime and anywhere. Ensuring the accessibility and usability of such services is crucial to citizens to allow smooth online transaction. In this paper, an empirical study to investigate the accessibility and usability of a representative sample of Turkish e-government services presented. The study evaluated sixty one Turkish government websites according to four perspectives.The accessibility will be based on the compliance to WCAG 2.0 recommendations, and the usability will be based on a heuristics-based content, HTML and CSS validity and current use of HTML 5 and ARIA. The evaluation results show that the examined e-Government services have one or more accessibility issues. On the other hand, in terms of usability, most services were usable and well designed, thus little work is recommended to make them more user-friendly and attractive to citizen.

Keywords: e-Government, Turkey, Accessibility, Usability

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21 A Cost Effective Approach to Develop Mid-Size Enterprise Software Adopted the Waterfall Model

Authors: Mohammad Nehal Hasnine, Md Kamrul Hasan Chayon, Md Mobasswer Rahman

Abstract:

Organizational tendencies towards computer-based information processing have been observed noticeably in the third-world countries. Many enterprises are taking major initiatives towards computerized working environment because of massive benefits of computer-based information processing. However, designing and developing information resource management software for small and mid-size enterprises under budget costs and strict deadline is always challenging for software engineers. Therefore, we introduced an approach to design mid-size enterprise software by using the Waterfall model, which is one of the SDLC (Software Development Life Cycles), in a cost effective way. To fulfill research objectives, in this study, we developed mid-sized enterprise software named “BSK Management System” that assists enterprise software clients with information resource management and perform complex organizational tasks. Waterfall model phases have been applied to ensure that all functions, user requirements, strategic goals, and objectives are met. In addition, Rich Picture, Structured English, and Data Dictionary have been implemented and investigated properly in engineering manner. Furthermore, an assessment survey with 20 participants has been conducted to investigate the usability and performance of the proposed software. The survey results indicated that our system featured simple interfaces, easy operation and maintenance, quick processing, and reliable and accurate transactions.

Keywords: Usability, end-user application development, enterprise software design, information resource management

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20 Elements of Usability and Sociability in Activity Management System for e-Masjid

Authors: Hidayah bt Rahmalan, Marhazli Kipli, Muhammad Suffian Sikandar Ghani, Maisarah Abu, Muhammad Faisal Ashaari, Norlizam Md Sukiban

Abstract:

This study presents an example of activity management system for e-Masjid implementing elements of usability and sociability. It is expected to resolve the shortcomings of the most e-Masjid that provide lot of activities to their community. However, the data on handling a lot of activities or events in which involve a lot of people will be difficult to manipulate. Thus, this paper presents the usability and sociability element on an activity management system that not only eases the job for the user but being practical for future when the community join any events. For the time being, this activity management system was only applied for Sayyidina Abu Bakar Mosque in Utem, Malacca.

Keywords: Usability, e-masjid, sociability, activity management system

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19 The Importance of Cultural Adaptation of B2C E-Services Design in Germany

Authors: Rasha Alhendawi

Abstract:

This research will give the introductory ideas for cultural adaption of B2C E-Service design in Germany. By the intense competition of E-Service development, many companies have realized the importance of understanding the emotional and cultural characteristics of their customers. Ignoring customers’ needs and requirements throughout the E-Service design can lead to faults, mistakes, and gaps. The term of E-Service usability now is changed not only to develop high quality E-Services, but also to be extended to include customer satisfaction and provide for them to feel local.

Keywords: e-Services, Usability, human computer interaction (HCI), cultural usability, business-to-consumer (B2C)

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18 Evaluating the Quality of Private University Websites in Malaysia

Authors: Rubijesmin Abdul Latif

Abstract:

This paper focuses on evaluating what are quality components of university websites in Malaysia especially the private universities. It is believed that with websites that prioritize quality, the websites will serve its intended users satisfactory. From the compiled analysis of other studies, quality components were identified and tested among 30 randomly selected respondents. Four Malaysia private university websites were compared and the highlights were better understanding of what users want for a quality university website.

Keywords: Quality, User Experience, Usability, criteria, website evaluation, university website

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17 The Correlation between Users’ Star Rating and Usability on Mobile Applications

Authors: Abdulmohsen A. AlBesher, Richard T. Stone

Abstract:

Star rating for mobile applications is a very useful way to differentiate between the best and worst rated applications. However, the question is whether the rating reflects the level of usability or not. The aim of this paper is to find out if the user’ star ratings on mobile apps correlate with the usability of those apps. Thus, we tested three mobile apps, which have different star ratings: low, medium, and high. Participating in the study, 15 mobile phone users were asked to do one single task for each of the three tested apps. After each task, the participant evaluated the app by answering a survey based on the System Usability Scale (SUS). The results found that there is no major correlation between the star rating and the usability. However, it was found that the task completion time and the numbers of errors that may happen while completing the task were significantly correlated to the usability.

Keywords: Mobile Applications, Usability, SUS, star rating

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16 Assessing an Instrument Usability: Response Interpolation and Scale Sensitivity

Authors: Betsy Ng, Seng Chee Tan, Choon Lang Quek, Peter Looker, Jaime Koh

Abstract:

The purpose of the present study was to determine the particular scale rating that stands out for an instrument. The instrument was designed to assess student perceptions of various learning environments, namely face-to-face, online and blended. The original instrument had a 5-point Likert items (1 = strongly disagree and 5 = strongly agree). Alternate versions were modified with a 6-point Likert scale and a bar scale rating. Participants consisted of undergraduates in a local university were involved in the usability testing of the instrument in an electronic setting. They were presented with the 5-point, 6-point and percentage-bar (100-point) scale ratings, in response to their perceptions of learning environments. The 5-point and 6-point Likert scales were presented in the form of radio button controls for each number, while the percentage-bar scale was presented with a sliding selection. Among these responses, 6-point Likert scale emerged to be the best overall. When participants were confronted with the 5-point items, they either chose 3 or 4, suggesting that data loss could occur due to the insensitivity of instrument. The insensitivity of instrument could be due to the discreet options, as evidenced by response interpolation. To avoid the constraint of discreet options, the percentage-bar scale rating was tested, but the participant responses were not well-interpolated. The bar scale might have provided a variety of responses without a constraint of a set of categorical options, but it seemed to reflect a lack of perceived and objective accuracy. The 6-point Likert scale was more likely to reflect a respondent’s perceived and objective accuracy as well as higher sensitivity. This finding supported the conclusion that 6-point Likert items provided a more accurate measure of the participant’s evaluation. The 5-point and bar scale ratings might not be accurately measuring the participants’ responses. This study highlighted the importance of the respondent’s perception of accuracy, respondent’s true evaluation, and the scale’s ease of use. Implications and limitations of this study were also discussed.

Keywords: Accuracy, Usability, Interpolation, Sensitivity, Likert scales

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15 Smart Online Library Catalog System with Query Expansion for the University of the Cordilleras

Authors: Thelma Palaoag, Vincent Ballola, Raymund Dilan

Abstract:

The Smart Online Library Catalog System with Query Expansion seeks to address the low usage of the library because of the emergence of the Internet. Library users are not accustomed to catalog systems that need a query to have the exact words without any mistakes for decent results to appear. The graphical user interface of the current system has a rather skewed learning curve for users to adapt with. With a simple graphical user interface inspired by Google, users can search quickly just by inputting their query and hitting the search button. Because of the query expansion techniques incorporated into the new system such as stemming, thesaurus search, and weighted search, users can have more efficient results from their query. The system will be adding the root words of the user's query to the query itself which will then be cross-referenced to a thesaurus database to search for any synonyms that will be added to the query. The results will then be arranged by the number of times the word has been searched. Online queries will also be added to the results for additional references. Users showed notable increases in efficiency and usability due to the familiar interface and query expansion techniques incorporated in the system. The simple yet familiar design led to a better user experience. Users also said that they would be more inclined in using the library because of the new system. The incorporation of query expansion techniques gives a notable increase of results to users that in turn gives them a wider range of resources found in the library. Used books mean more knowledge imparted to the users.

Keywords: Usability, query expansion, catalog system, stemming, weighted search, thesaurus search

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14 Usability and Biometric Authentication of Electronic Voting System

Authors: Masood Ahmad, Nighat Ayub

Abstract:

In this paper, a new voting system is developed and its usability is evaluated. The main feature of this system is the biometric verification of the voter and then a few easy steps to cast a vote. As compared to existing systems available, e.g dual vote, the new system requires no training in advance. The security is achieved via multiple key concept (another part of this project). More than 100 student voters were participated in the election from University of Malakanad, Chakdara, PK. To achieve the reliability, the voters cast their votes in two ways, i.e. paper based and electronic based voting using our new system. The results of paper based and electronic voting system are compared and it is concluded that the voters cast their votes for the intended candidates on the electronic voting system. The voters were requested to fill a questionnaire and the results of the questionnaire are carefully analyzed. The results show that the new system proposed in this paper is more secure and usable than other systems.

Keywords: Security, Authentication, E-Voting, Usability

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13 A Study of the Tactile Codification on the Philippine Banknote: Redesigning for the Blind

Authors: Ace Mari S. Simbajon, Rhaella J. Ybañez, Mae G. Nadela, Cherry E. Sagun, Nera Mae A. Puyo

Abstract:

This study determined the usability of the Philippine banknotes. An experimental design was used in the study involving twenty (n=20) randomly selected blind participants. The three aspects of usability were measured: effectiveness, efficiency, and satisfaction. It was found out that the effectiveness rate of the current Philippine Banknotes ranges from 20 percent to 35 percent which means it is not effective basing from Cauro’s threshold of average effectiveness rate which is 78 percent. Its efficiency rate is ranging from 18.06 to 26.22 seconds per denomination. The average satisfaction rate is 1.45 which means the blind are very dissatisfied. These results were used as a guide in making the proposed tactile codification using embossed dots or embossed lines. A round of simulation was conducted with the blind to assess the usability of the two proposals. Results were then statistically treated using t-test. Results show statistically significant difference between the usability of the current banknotes versus the proposed designs. Moreover, it was found out that the use of embossed dots is more effective, more efficient, and more satisfying than the embossed lines with an effectiveness rate ranging from 90 percent to 100 percent, efficiency rate ranging from 6.73 seconds to 12.99 seconds, and satisfaction rate of 3.4 which means the blind are very satisfied.

Keywords: Usability, blind, Philippine banknotes, tactile codification

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12 The Effect of Visual Fluency and Cognitive Fluency on Access Rates of Web Pages

Authors: Xiaoying Guo, Xiangyun Wang

Abstract:

Access rates is a key indicator of reflecting the popularity of web pages. Having high access rates are very important for web pages, especially for news web pages, online shopping sites and searching engines. In this paper, we analyzed the influences of visual fluency and cognitive fluency on access rates of Chinese web pages. Firstly, we conducted an experiment of scoring the web pages. Twenty-five subjects were invited to view top 50 web pages of China, and they were asked to give a score in a 5-point Likert-scale from four aspects, including complexity, comfortability, familiarity and usability. Secondly, the obtained results was analyzed by correlation analysis and factor analysis in R. By factor analysis; we analyzed the contributions of visual fluency and cognitive fluency to the access rates. The results showed that both visual fluency and cognitive fluency affect the access rate of web pages. Compared to cognitive fluency, visual fluency play a more important role in user’s accessing of web pages.

Keywords: Usability, cognitive fluency, visual fluency, visual complexity

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11 The Design Process of an Interactive Seat for Improving Workplace Productivity

Authors: Carlos Ferreira, Paulo Freitas, Valentim Freitas

Abstract:

Creative industries’ workers are becoming more prominent as countries move towards intellectual-based economies. Consequently, the nature and essence of the workplace needs to be reconfigured so that creativity and productivity can be better promoted at these spaces. Using a multidisciplinary approach and a user-centered methodology, combining product design, electronic engineering, software and human-computer interaction, we have designed and developed a new seat that uses embedded sensors and actuators to increase the overall well-being of its users, their productivity and their creativity. Our contribution focuses on the parameters that most affect the user’s work on these kinds of spaces, which are, according to our study, noise and temperature. We describe the design process for a new interactive seat targeted at improving workspace productivity.

Keywords: Ergonomics, Creativity, Human-Computer Interaction, User Interface, Usability

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10 A Unified Approach to Support the Coordination of Usability Work in Agile Software Development

Authors: Fouad Abdulameer Salman, Aziz Bin Deraman, Masita Binti Abdul Jalil

Abstract:

Usability evaluation is essential for developing usable software systems, yet its integration within agile software development remains a challenging interdisciplinary endeavour. In this paper, the authors present a study to investigate obstacles of such integration from the management perspective. The study incorporates two methods, namely an online questionnaire survey and a series of interviews with participants that answered the questionnaire. Based on the obtained results, a unified approach is proposed for enabling coordinate the efforts of agile developers and usability engineers to produce usable software systems.

Keywords: Usability, Usability Evaluation, Software Development Process, usability management

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9 Understanding the Qualitative Nature of Product Reviews by Integrating Text Processing Algorithm and Usability Feature Extraction

Authors: Cherry Yieng Siang Ling, Joong Hee Lee, Myung Hwan Yun

Abstract:

The quality of a product to be usable has become the basic requirement in consumer’s perspective while failing the requirement ends up the customer from not using the product. Identifying usability issues from analyzing quantitative and qualitative data collected from usability testing and evaluation activities aids in the process of product design, yet the lack of studies and researches regarding analysis methodologies in qualitative text data of usability field inhibits the potential of these data for more useful applications. While the possibility of analyzing qualitative text data found with the rapid development of data analysis studies such as natural language processing field in understanding human language in computer, and machine learning field in providing predictive model and clustering tool. Therefore, this research aims to study the application capability of text processing algorithm in analysis of qualitative text data collected from usability activities. This research utilized datasets collected from LG neckband headset usability experiment in which the datasets consist of headset survey text data, subject’s data and product physical data. In the analysis procedure, which integrated with the text-processing algorithm, the process includes training of comments onto vector space, labeling them with the subject and product physical feature data, and clustering to validate the result of comment vector clustering. The result shows 'volume and music control button' as the usability feature that matches best with the cluster of comment vectors where centroid comments of a cluster emphasized more on button positions, while centroid comments of the other cluster emphasized more on button interface issues. When volume and music control buttons are designed separately, the participant experienced less confusion, and thus, the comments mentioned only about the buttons' positions. While in the situation where the volume and music control buttons are designed as a single button, the participants experienced interface issues regarding the buttons such as operating methods of functions and confusion of functions' buttons. The relevance of the cluster centroid comments with the extracted feature explained the capability of text processing algorithms in analyzing qualitative text data from usability testing and evaluations.

Keywords: natural language processing, Usability, qualitative data, text-processing algorithm

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8 The Importance of Applying Established Web Site Design Principles on an Online Performance Management System

Authors: R. W. Brown, P. J. Blignaut

Abstract:

An online performance management system was evaluated, and recommendations were made to improve the system. The study shows the effects of not adhering to the established web design principles and conventions. Furthermore, the study indicates that if the online performance management system is not well designed, it may have negative effects on the overall usability of the system and these negative effects will have consequences for both the employer and employees. The evaluation was done in terms of the usability metrics of effectiveness, efficiency and user satisfaction. Effectiveness was measured in terms of the success rate with which users could execute prescribed tasks in a sandbox system. Efficiency was expressed in terms of the time it took participants to understand what is expected of them and to execute the tasks. Post-test questionnaires were used in order to determine the satisfaction of the participants. Recommendations were made to improve the usability of the online performance management system.

Keywords: Human resource management, Performance Management, Usability, eye tracking

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7 Usability in E-Commerce Websites: Results of Eye Tracking Evaluations

Authors: Beste Kaysı, Yasemin Topaloğlu

Abstract:

Usability is one of the most important quality attributes for web-based information systems. Specifically, for e-commerce applications, usability becomes more prominent. In this study, we aimed to explore the features that experienced users seek in e-commerce applications. We used eye tracking method in evaluations. Eye movement data are obtained from the eye-tracking method and analyzed based on task completion time, number of fixations, as well as heat map and gaze plot measures. The results of the analysis show that the eye movements of participants' are too static in certain areas and their areas of interest are scattered in many different places. It has been determined that this causes users to fail to complete their transactions. According to the findings, we outlined the issues to improve the usability of e-commerce websites. Then we propose solutions to identify the issues. In this way, it is expected that e-commerce sites will be developed which will make experienced users more satisfied.

Keywords: Usability, e-commerce websites, eye tracking method, website evaluations

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6 Investigating the Usability of a University Website from the Users’ Perspective: An Empirical Study of Benue State University Website

Authors: Abraham Undu, Stephen Akuma

Abstract:

Websites are becoming a major component of an organization’s success in our ever globalizing competitive world. The website symbolizes an organization, interacting or projecting an organization’s principles, culture, values, vision, and perspectives. It is an interface connecting organizations and their clients. The university, as an academic institution, makes use of a website to communicate and offer computing services to its stakeholders (students, staff, host community, university management etc). Unfortunately, website designers often give more consideration to the technology, organizational structure and business objectives of the university than to the usability of the site. Website designers end up designing university websites which do not meet the needs of the primary users. This empirical study investigated the Benue State University website from the point view of students. This research was realized by using a standardized website usability questionnaire based on the five factors of usability defined by WAMMI (Website Analysis and Measurement Inventory): attractiveness, controllability, efficiency, learnability and helpfulness. The result of the investigation showed that the university website (https://portal.bsum.edu.ng/) has neutral usability level because of the usability issues associated with the website. The research recommended feasible solutions to improve the usability of the website from the users’ perspective and also provided a modified usability model that will be used for better evaluation of the Benue State University website.

Keywords: Usability, Benue State University, modified usability model, usability factors

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5 Streamlining the Fuzzy Front-End and Improving the Usability of the Tools Involved

Authors: Michael N. O'Sullivan, Con Sheahan

Abstract:

Researchers have spent decades developing tools and techniques to aid teams in the new product development (NPD) process. Despite this, it is evident that there is a huge gap between their academic prevalence and their industry adoption. For the fuzzy front-end, in particular, there is a wide range of tools to choose from, including the Kano Model, the House of Quality, and many others. In fact, there are so many tools that it can often be difficult for teams to know which ones to use and how they interact with one another. Moreover, while the benefits of using these tools are obvious to industrialists, they are rarely used as they carry a learning curve that is too steep and they become too complex to manage over time. In essence, it is commonly believed that they are simply not worth the effort required to learn and use them. This research explores a streamlined process for the fuzzy front-end, assembling the most effective tools and making them accessible to everyone. The process was developed iteratively over the course of 3 years, following over 80 final year NPD teams from engineering, design, technology, and construction as they carried a product from concept through to production specification. Questionnaires, focus groups, and observations were used to understand the usability issues with the tools involved, and a human-centred design approach was adopted to produce a solution to these issues. The solution takes the form of physical toolkit, similar to a board game, which allows the team to play through an example of a new product development in order to understand the process and the tools, before using it for their own product development efforts. A complimentary website is used to enhance the physical toolkit, and it provides more examples of the tools being used, as well as deeper discussions on each of the topics, allowing teams to adapt the process to their skills, preferences and product type. Teams found the solution very useful and intuitive and experienced significantly less confusion and mistakes with the process than teams who did not use it. Those with a design background found it especially useful for the engineering principles like Quality Function Deployment, while those with an engineering or technology background found it especially useful for design and customer requirements acquisition principles, like Voice of the Customer. Products developed using the toolkit are added to the website as more examples of how it can be used, creating a loop which helps future teams understand how the toolkit can be adapted to their project, whether it be a small consumer product or a large B2B service. The toolkit unlocks the potential of these beneficial tools to those in industry, both for large, experienced teams and for inexperienced start-ups. It allows users to assess the market potential of their product concept faster and more effectively, arriving at the product design stage with technical requirements prioritized according to their customers’ needs and wants.

Keywords: New Product Development, Usability, quality function deployment, voice of customer, kano model, fuzzy front-end

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4 Usability Assessment of a Bluetooth-Enabled Resistance Exercise Band among Young Adults

Authors: Lillian M. Seo, Curtis L. Petersen, Ryan J. Halter, David Kotz, John A. Batsis

Abstract:

Background: Resistance-based exercises effectively enhance muscle strength, which is especially important in older populations as it reduces the risk of disability. Our group developed a Bluetooth-enabled handle for resistance exercise bands that wirelessly transmits relative force data through low-energy Bluetooth to a local smartphone or similar device. The system has the potential to measure home-based exercise interventions, allowing health professionals to monitor compliance. Its feasibility has already been demonstrated in both clinical and field-based settings, but it remained unclear whether the system’s usability persisted upon repeated use. The current study sought to assess the usability of this system and its users’ satisfaction with repeated use by deploying the device among younger adults to gather formative information that can ultimately improve the device’s design for older adults. Methods: A usability study was conducted in which 32 participants used the above system. Participants executed 10 repetitions of four commonly performed exercises: bicep flexion, shoulder abduction, elbow extension, and triceps extension. Each completed three exercise sessions, separated by at least 24 hours to minimize muscle fatigue. At its conclusion, subjects completed an adapted version of the usefulness, satisfaction, and ease (USE) questionnaire – assessing the system across four domains: usability, satisfaction, ease of use, and ease of learning. The 20-item questionnaire examined how strongly a participant agrees with positive statements about the device on a seven-point Likert scale, with one representing ‘strongly disagree’ and seven representing ‘strongly agree.’ Participants’ data were aggregated to calculate mean response values for each question and domain, effectively assessing the device’s performance across different facets of the user experience. Summary force data were visualized using a custom web application. Finally, an optional prompt at the end of the questionnaire allowed for written comments and feedback from participants to elicit qualitative indicators of usability. Results: Of the n=32 participants, 13 (41%) were female; their mean age was 32.4 ± 11.8 years, and no participants had a physical impairment. No usability questions received a mean score < 5 of seven. The four domains’ mean scores were: usefulness 5.66 ± 0.35; satisfaction 6.23 ± 0.06; ease of use 6.25 ± 0.43; and ease of learning 6.50 ± 0.19. Representative quotes of the open-ended feedback include: ‘A non-rigid strap-style handle might be useful for some exercises,’ and, ‘Would need different bands for each exercise as they use different muscle groups with different strength levels.’ General impressions were favorable, supporting the expectation that the device would be a useful tool in exercise interventions. Conclusions: A simple usability assessment of a Bluetooth-enabled resistance exercise band supports a consistent and positive user experience among young adults. This study provides adequate formative data, assuring the next steps can be taken to continue testing and development for the target population of older adults.

Keywords: Mobile Health, Exercise, mHealth, bluetooth, Usability

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3 Application of Industrial Ergonomics in Vehicle Service System Design

Authors: Zhao Yu, Zhi-Nan Zhang

Abstract:

More and more interactive devices are used in the transportation service system. Our mobile phones, on-board computers, and Head-Up Displays (HUDs) can all be used as the tools of the in-car service system. People can access smart systems with different terminals such as mobile phones, computers, pads and even their cars and watches. Different forms of terminals bring the different quality of interaction by the various human-computer Interaction modes. The new interactive devices require good ergonomics design at each stage of the whole design process. According to the theory of human factors and ergonomics, this paper compared three types of interactive devices by four driving tasks. Forty-eight drivers were chosen to experience these three interactive devices (mobile phones, on-board computers, and HUDs) by a simulate driving process. The subjects evaluated ergonomics performance and subjective workload after the process. And subjects were encouraged to support suggestions for improving the interactive device. The result shows that different interactive devices have different advantages in driving tasks, especially in non-driving tasks such as information and entertainment fields. Compared with mobile phones and onboard groups, the HUD groups had shorter response times in most tasks. The tasks of slow-up and the emergency braking are less accurate than the performance of a control group, which may because the haptic feedback of these two tasks is harder to distinguish than the visual information. Simulated driving is also helpful in improving the design of in-vehicle interactive devices. The paper summarizes the ergonomics characteristics of three in-vehicle interactive devices. And the research provides a reference for the future design of in-vehicle interactive devices through an ergonomic approach to ensure a good interaction relationship between the driver and the in-vehicle service system.

Keywords: Human Factors, Transportation System, Industrial Ergonomics, Usability, vehicle user interface

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2 Overcoming Usability Challenges of Educational Math Apps: Designing and Testing a Mobile Graphing Calculator

Authors: M. Tomaschko

Abstract:

The integration of technology in educational settings has gained a lot of interest. Especially the use of mobile devices and accompanying mobile applications can offer great potentials to complement traditional education with new technologies and enrich students’ learning in various ways. Nevertheless, the usability of the deployed mathematics application is an indicative factor to exploit the full potential of technology enhanced learning because directing cognitive load toward using an application will likely inhibit effective learning. For this reason, the purpose of this research study is the identification of possible usability issues of the mobile GeoGebra Graphing Calculator application. Therefore, eye tracking in combination with task scenarios, think aloud method, and a SUS questionnaire were used. Based on the revealed usability issues, the mobile application was iteratively redesigned and assessed in order to verify the success of the usability improvements. In this paper, the identified usability issues are presented, and recommendations on how to overcome these concerns are provided. The main findings relate to the conception of a mathematics keyboard and the interaction design in relation to an equation editor, as well as the representation of geometrical construction tools. In total, 12 recommendations were formed to improve the usability of a mobile graphing calculator application. The benefit to be gained from this research study is not only the improvement of the usability of the existing GeoGebra Graphing Calculator application but also to provide helpful hints that could be considered from designers and developers of mobile math applications.

Keywords: Usability, Math Education, smartphone, geogebra, graphing calculator

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