Activity-Centered Design: An Ecological Approach to Designing Smart Tools and Usable Systems

Activity-Centered Design: An Ecological Approach to Designing Smart Tools and Usable Systems

by Geraldine Gay, Helene Hembrooke
     
 

ISBN-10: 0262072483

ISBN-13: 9780262072489

Pub. Date: 03/01/2004

Publisher: MIT Press

The shift in the practice of human-computer interaction (HCI) Design from user-centered to context-based design marks a significant change in focus. With context-based design, designers start not with a preconceived idea of what users should do, but with an understanding of what users actually do. Context-based design focuses on the situation in which the

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Overview

The shift in the practice of human-computer interaction (HCI) Design from user-centered to context-based design marks a significant change in focus. With context-based design, designers start not with a preconceived idea of what users should do, but with an understanding of what users actually do. Context-based design focuses on the situation in which the technology will be used — the activities relating to it and their social contexts. Designers must also realize that introduction of the technology itself changes the situation; in order to design workable systems, the design process must become flexible and adaptive. In Activity-Centered Design, Geri Gay and Helene Hembrooke argue that it is time to develop new models for HCI design that support not only research and development but also investigations into the context and motivation of user behavior.Gay and Hembrooke examine the ongoing interaction of computer systems use, design practice,and design evaluation, using the concepts of activity theory and related methods as a theoretical framework. Among the topics they discuss are the reciprocal relationship between the tool and the task, how activities shape the requirements of particular tools and how the application of the tools begins to reshape the activity; differing needs and expectations of participants when new technology is introduced, examining in particular the integration of wireless handheld devices into museums and learning environments; and the effect of the layout of the computing space on movement, function, and social interaction. Gay and Hembrooke then apply their findings on the use of technology in everyday contexts to inform future HCI design practice.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780262072489
Publisher:
MIT Press
Publication date:
03/01/2004
Series:
Acting with Technology
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
144
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.75(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Table of Contents

Series Foreword
Preface: Mediating Interactions
Acknowledgments
Introduction: Making the Case for Context-Based Design
1Activity Theory and Context-Based Design1
2Understanding Perspectives: Social Construction of Technology15
3Creating a Sense of Place: Designing for Online Learning Conversations31
4Blurring Boundaries: A study of Ubiquitous Computing53
5Designing for Context-Aware Computing73
6Configural Analysis of Spaces and Places89
References101
Index109

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