Designing the User Interface: Strategies for Effective Human-Computer Interaction / Edition 2

Designing the User Interface: Strategies for Effective Human-Computer Interaction / Edition 2

by Ben Shneiderman
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Designing the User Interface: Strategies for Effective Human-Computer Interaction / Edition 2

In 1996, recognizing this book, ACM's Special Interest Group on Documentation (SIGDOC) presented Ben Shneiderman with the Joseph Rigo Award. SIGDOC praised the book as one "that took the jargon and mystery out of the field of human-computer interaction" and attributed the book's success to "its readability and emphasis on practice as well as research."

In revising this best-seller, Ben Shneiderman again provides a complete, current, and authoritative introduction to user-interface design. The user interface is the part of every computer system that determines how people control and operate that system. When the interface is well designed, it is comprehensible, predictable, and controllable; users feel competent, satisfied, and responsible for their actions. In this book, the author discusses the principles and practices needed to design such effective interaction.

Based on 20 years experience, Shneiderman offers readers practical techniques and guidelines for interface design. As a scientist, he also takes great care to discuss underlying issues and to support conclusions with empirical results. Interface designers, software engineers, and product managers will all find here an invaluable resource for creating systems that facilitate rapid learning and performance, yield low error rates, and generate high user satisfaction.

Coverage includes the human factors of interactive software (with added discussion of diverse user communities), tested methods to develop and assess interfaces, interaction styles (like direct manipulation for graphical user interfaces), and design considerations (effective messages, consistent screendesign, appropriate color).

Highlights of the Third Edition:

  • New chapters on the World Wide Web, Information Visualization, and Computer-Supported Cooperative Work
  • Expanded and earlier coverage of Development Methodologies, Evaluation Techniques, and User-Interface-Building Tools
  • Thought-provoking discussion of Speech Input/Output, Natural-Language Interaction, Anthropomorphic Design, Virtual Environments, and Agents

A booksite that accompanies the book with additional information and instructional suport is now available.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780201572865
Publisher: Addison-Wesley
Publication date: 04/28/1992
Edition description: Older Edition
Pages: 573
Product dimensions: 6.66(w) x 9.56(h) x 1.17(d)

About the Author

BEN SHNEIDERMAN ( is a Distinguished University Professor in the Department of Computer Science, Founding Director (1983-2000) of the Human-Computer Interaction Laboratory (, and a Member of the UM Institute for Advanced Computer Studies (UMIACS) at the University of Maryland. He is a Fellow of the AAAS, ACM, IEEE, NAI, and SIGCHI Academy and a Member of the National Academy of Engineering, in recognition of his pioneering contributions to human-computer interaction and information visualization.

CATHERINE PLAISANT ( is a Senior Research Scientist at the University of Maryland Institute for Advanced Computer Studies and Associate Director of Research of the Human-Computer Interaction Lab. Catherine Plaisant earned her Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering at the Université Pierre et Marie Curie - Paris VI, France. She was elected to the ACM SIGCHI Academy in 2015 for her contributions to the field of human-computer interaction, medical informatics, and information visualization.

MAXINE COHEN ( is a Professor in the College of Engineering and Computing at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, FL. She teaches graduate courses (on campus and online) in Human-Computer Interaction, Interaction Design, and Social Media and advises doctoral students. Previously she worked for IBM (Endicott, NY and Boca Raton, FL) and taught at the Watson School of Engineering at Binghamton University. She has served as a meta-reviewer for ACM Computing Reviews for over 20 years. She earned her Ph.D. and M.S. from Binghamton University and her B.A. from the University of Vermont. She is a member of ACM, IEEE, and UPE.

STEVEN JACOBS ( retired from the aerospace industry and is now a Lecturer in the School of Informatics, Computing, and Cyber Systems as well as University College Faculty Fellow at Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona. He was with Northrop Grumman Information Systems (formerly TRW) in Carson, California for 25 years. He was also Adjunct Assistant Professor at the University of Southern California Department of Computer Science for 17 years, where he developed and taught their graduate courses in user interface design and human performance engineering. He received his M.S.C.S. from UCLA and B.A. in Mathematics from Monmouth University (NJ). Mr. Jacobs is a Senior Member of ACM.

NIKLAS ELMQVIST ( is an Associate Professor in the College of Information Studies at University of Maryland, College Park, with affiliate appointments in the Department of Computer Science and the UM Institute for Advanced Computer Studies (UMIACS). He is also a member of the Human-Computer Interaction Laboratory (HCIL). Previously a faculty member at Purdue University, he received his Ph.D. from Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, Sweden. He is a Senior Member of the ACM and the IEEE.

NICHOLAS DIAKOPOULOS ( is an Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland, College Park Philip Merrill College of Journalism with courtesy appointments in the College of Information Studies and Department of Computer Science. He is a member of the Human-Computer Interaction Lab (HCIL) and is director of the Computational Journalism Lab where he researches algorithmic accountability, narrative data visualization, and social computing in the news. He received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from the School of Interactive Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Table of Contents

Human Factors Of Interactive Software.
Goals Of System Engineering.
Goals Of User-Interface Design.
Motivations For Human Factors In Design.
Accommodation Of Human Diversity.
Three Goals.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda.

Theories, Principles, And Guidelines.
High-Level Theories.
Object-Action Interface Model Principle 1: Recognize The Diversity.
Principle 2: Use The Eight Golden Rules Of Interface Design.
Principle 3: Prevent Errors.
Guidelines For Data Display.
Guidelines For Data Entry.
Balance Of Automation And Human Control.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda.

Managing Design Processes.
Organizational Design To Support Usability.
The Three Pillars Of Design.
Development Methodologies.
Ethnographic Observation.
Participatory Design.
Scenario Development.
Social Impact Statement For Early Design Review.
Legal Issues.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda.

Expert Reviews, Usability Testing, Surveys, And Continuing Assessments.
Expert Reviews.
Usability Testing And Laboratories.
Acceptance Tests.
Evaluation During Active Use.
Controlled Psychologically Oriented Experiments.

Software Tools.
Specification Methods.
Software Tools.
Evaluation And Critiquing Tools.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda.

Direct Manipulation And Virtual Environments.
Examples Of Direct-Manipulation Systems.
Explanations Of Direct Manipulation.
Visual Thinking And Icons.
Direct-Manipulation Programming.
Home Automation.
Remote Direct Manipulation.
Virtual Environments.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda.

Menu Selection, Form Fill-In, And Dialog Boxes.
Task-Related Organization.
Item Presentation Sequence.
Response Time And Display Rate.
Fast Movement Through Menus.
Menu Layout.
Form Fill-In.
Dialog Boxes.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda.

Command And Natural Languages.
Functionality To Support Users' Tasks.
Command-Organization Strategies.
Benefits Of Structure.
Naming And Abbreviations.
Command Menus.
Natural Language In Computing.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda.

Interaction Devices.
Keyboards And Function Keys.
Pointing Devices.
Speech Recognition, Digitization, And Generation.
Image And Video Displays.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda.

Response Time And Display Rate.
Theoretical Foundations.
Expectations And Attitudes.
User Productivity.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda.

Presentation Styles: Balancing Function And Fashion.
Error Messages.
Nonanthropomorphic Design.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda.

Printed Manuals, Online Help, And Tutorials.
Reading From Paper Versus From Displays.
Preparing Printed Manuals.
Preparations Of Online Facilities.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda.

Multiple-Window Strategies.
Individual-Window Design.
Multiple-Window Design.
Coordination By Tightly Coupled Windows.
Image Browsing And Tightly Coupled Windows.
Personal Role Management And Elastic Windows.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda.

Computer-Supported Cooperative Work.
Goals Of Cooperation.
Asynchronous Interactions: Different Time, Different Place.
Synchronous Distributed: Different Place, Same Time.
Face To Face: Same Place, Same Time.
Application Of Cscw To Education.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda .

Information Search And Visualization.
Database Query And Phrase Search In Textual Documents.
Multimedia Document Searches.
Information Visualization.
Advanced Filtering.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda.

Hypermedia And The World Wide Web.
Hypertext And Hypermedia.
Information Abundant Web Sites.
Genres And Goals And Designers.
Users And Their Tasks.
Object-Action Interface Model For Web Site Design.
Practitioner's Summary.
Researcher's Agenda.

Social And Individual Impact Of User Interfaces.
Hopes And Dreams.
Ten Plagues Of The Information Age.
Prevention Of The Plagues.
Overcoming The Obstacle Of Animism.
In The Long Run.
Practitioner's Summary.

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