Hci Research Papers 2013 Chevy

J. Grudin, 2017. Morgan & Claypool.

I wrote this short book to provide practitioners and researchers a broad familiarity with the evolution of several fields that have contributed to HCI, their similarities and differences, and patterns over time that can help us address the opportunities, challenges, and surprises to come.

  • Observations on Finishing a Book — January 2017 (link)
  • Organizational Adoption of New Communication Technologies

J. Grudin, 2014. In H. Topi (Ed.), Computer Science Handbook, Vol. II. Chapman & Hall / CRC Press. Table of contents

Overview of research on organizational uses of IM, weblogs, wikis, and social networking sites.

  • Lasting Impact — September 2014 (link)
  • Debatable — November 2014 (link)
  • Uses of Ink — October 2014 (link)
  • Diversity and Survival — August 2014 (link)
  • Visual Design’s Trajectory — July 2014 (link)
  • Organizational Behavior — June 2014 (link)
  • Philosophical Robbery — May 2014 (link)
  • True Digital Natives — April 2014 (link)
  • Swarms and Tribes — March 2014 (link)
  • Theory Weary — February 2014 (link)
  • The Decline of Discussion — January 2014 (link)
  • Foreword to The Discipline of Organizing (PDF)

Robert J. Glushko, Ed. 2013. MIT Press.

A monumental book, now in its fourth edition.Robert Glushko is on the faculty of the Berkeley School of Information.

  • Conference-Journal Hybrids (PDF)

J. Grudin, G. Mark & J. Riedl, 2013. Communications of the ACM, 56, 1, 44-49.A survey of conference program selection across computer science, including our introduction of a revision cycle for CSCW 2012.

Gloria Mark, from UC Irvine, John Riedl, from the University of Minnesota, and I were CSCW 2012 program co-chairs.

  • Engineering in Reverse — December 2013 (link)
  • Post-visionary — November 2013 (link)
  • Finding Protected Places — October 2013 (link)
  • Artifact Invention and Research — September 2013 (link)
  • Canyonlands — August 2013 (link)
  • Bias — July 2013 (link)
  • When A/B Testing Gets an F — June 2013 (link)
  • A Slow Triangulation — May 2013 (link)
  • A Perfect Storm — April 2013 (link)
  • Couch Potato U. — March 2013 (Link)
  • No Place for Hobbits — February 2013 (link)
  • Wrong about MOOCS — January 2013 (link)
  • Punctuated Equilibrium and Technology Change (PDF)

J. Grudin, September 2012. ACM Interactions, 62-66.

Effects of waves of technology adoption, illustrated by oscillating ties in the field of CSCW.

  • CSCW: Computer Supported Cooperative Work (Web page)

J. Grudin & S. Poltrock, 2012. In M. Soegaard & R.F. Dam (Eds.), Encyclopedia of human-computer interaction. Interaction-Design.org Foundation.

An overview of CSCW with illustrations and links to resources, in an online encyclopedia.

  • Human-Computer Interaction

J. Grudin, 2011. In B. Cronin (Ed.), Annual review of information science and technology 45, 369-430. ASIS&T.

The first version of my HCI history to add the field of Information Science to human factors, management information systems, and computer science.

  • CSCW: Time Passed, Tempest, and Time Past (PDF)

Grudin, J. July 2010. ACM Interactions, 38-40.

The content of Computer Supported Cooperative Work has changed over the years.

  • What a Wonderful Critter: Orphans Find a Home (PDF)

J. Grudin, March 2010. ACM Interactions, 76-78.

HCI at the beginning of the computer era; ACM scans in early proceedings.

  • Discussion of ‘Is Google Making Us Stupid?’ (Link to audio) ** Radio Program **

Panelists: N. Carr, J. Grudin, D. Kirsh, & J. Zittrain. 20 July 2009. SETI Institute, broadcast on NPR.

A panel discussing the effects of technology on how we think. I’m the optimist.

M.S. Bernstein, P. André, K. Luther, E.T. Solovey, E. Poole, S.A. Paul, A.K. Kane, & J. Grudin, 2009. ACM CHI 2009 Extended Abstracts, 3493-3494.Finally making use of the acting class taken in grad school. The video is also here.

The inspired creators of this video were interns back then.

  • Brian Shackel’s Contribution to the Written History of Human-Computer Interaction (PDF)

J. Grudin, 2009. Interacting with Computers, 5-6, 370-374.If link is behind a paywall, the authors’ version.

From a memorial issue for a pioneer who was always considerate and gracious.

  • The Information School Phenomenon (PDF)

G. Olson & J. Grudin, March 2009. ACM Interactions, 38-40.

  • Why Engelbart Wasn’t Given the Keys to Fort Knox: Revisiting Three HCI Landmarks (PDF)

J, Grudin, September 2008. ACM Interactions, 65-67.

A fresh look at contributions of Vannevar Bush, Ivan Sutherland, and Doug Engelbart.

  • Crossing Boundaries: Digital Literacy in Enterprises (PDF)

L. Efimova & J. Grudin, 2008. In C. Lankshear & M. Knobel (Eds.), Digital literacies, 203-226. Peter Lang.Expands the discussion of results presented in previous papers on enterprise use of blogs and IM.

Lilia Efimova was an early blogger and analyst of new media.

  • Crossing Boundaries: A Case Study of Employee Blogging (PDF)

L. Efimova & J. Grudin, 2007. Proc. HICSS’07, 10 pages.Blogging was new. A company struggled to decided how to view employees whose blog posts addressed customers.

If link is behind a firewall, the authors’ version.

  • Going Critical: Perspective and Proportion in the Epistemology of Rob Kling (PDF)

J.L. King, S. Iacono & J. Grudin, 2007. The Information Society, 23, 4, 251-256.For a memorial issue, the evolution of our former colleague’s views.

John King, now at Michigan, Suzanne Iacono, now a manager at NSF, and I were UCI colleagues of Rob Kling.

  • NordiCHI 2006: Learning from a Regional Conference (PDF)

J. Grudin, 2007. ACM Interactions, 14, 3, 52-53.

This conference signaled to me that HCI was on a path to domain-specific basic research. (This has proven to be true, though more slowly in CHI than elsewhere.)

  • Policies and Practices (PDF)

J. Grudin, 2007. ACM Interactions, 14, 3, 5-7.

An observation that publishers’ policies and practices were not keeping up with technology change.

  • Living Without Parental Controls: The Future of HCI (PDF)

J. Grudin, March 2007. ACM Interactions, 48-52.

Gazing into a crystal ball.

  • The Demon in the Basement (PDF)

J. Grudin, November 2006. ACM Interactions, 50-53.

How we continually underestimate the impact of Moore’s Law and associated legislation.

  • Turing Maturing: The Separation of Artificial Intelligence and Human-Computer Interaction (PDF)

J. Grudin, September 2006. ACM Interactions, 54-57.

The relationship of AI and HCI, elaborated in an AI Magazine essay.

  • Death of a Sugar Daddy: The Mystery of the AFIPS Orphans (PDF)

J. Grudin, July 2006. ACM Interactions, 54-57.

The parent organization of ACM and IEEE, and the disease that killed it.

  • A Missing Generation: Office Automation/Information Systems and Human-Computer Interaction (PDF)

J. Grudin, May 2006. ACM Interactions, 58-61.

How did the once-massive minicomputer industry disappear?

  • The GUI Shock: Computer Graphics and Human-Computer Interaction (PDF)

Grudin, J., March 2006. ACM Interactions, 45-47 & 55.

For my first history column, as a test, I wanted to see if I could say something new about a field I’m not in.

  • Employee Blogging at Microsoft (PDF)

L. Efimova & J. Grudin, 2006. Inside Knowledge, 10, 4, 4-27.Overview for a professional magazine. Authors’ version.

  • Is HCI Homeless?: In Search of Inter-disciplinary Status (PDF)

J. Grudin, January 2006. ACM Interactions, 54-59.

This invited article, based on my 2005 Annals of the History of Computing paper, led to the Timelines series of columns, most written by other authors.

  • Enterprise Knowledge Management and Emerging Technologies (PDF)

J. Grudin, 2006. Proc. HICSS’06, 10 pages.

How tagging, simple blogging, and search could combat chronic KM problems. If link is behind a paywall, the author’s version.

  • Human Factors, CHI, and MIS

J. Grudin, 2006. In P. Zhang & D. Galletta (Eds.), HCI in MIS (I): Foundations, 402-421. Sharpe.

AIS SIGHCI was forming as I was starting to explore MIS HCI history. This was incorporated into later treatments.

  • Three Faces of Human-Computer Interaction (PDF)

J. Grudin, 2005. IEEE Annals of the History of Computing, 27, 4, 46-62.

If link is behind a paywall, the author’s version.

My first full-length article, building on a 2004 encyclopedia article, prior to incorporating library and information science.

  • Communication and Collaboration Support in an Age of Information Scarcity (PDF)

J. Grudin, 2005. In K. Okada, T. Hoshi & T. Inoue (Eds.), Communication and collaboration support systems, 13-23. Ohmsha.

An overview of CSCW perspectives, recognizing that the information tsunami was just beginning.

  • Ethnography for Software Development

A. Kirah, C. Fuson, J. Grudin & E. Feldman, 2005. In R.G. Bias & D.J. Mayhew (Eds.), Cost-justifying usability, 2nd edition: An update for the Internet age. Morgan Kaufmann. (Amazon book description)

Anne, Carolyn, and Evan were Microsoft colleagues.

  • Videoconferencing: Recent Experiments and Reassessment (PDF)

S. Poltrock & J. Grudin, 2005. Proc. HICSS’05, 10 pages.

If link is behind a paywall, the authors’ version.

Subtle issues that slowed video adoption. We expressed optimism that was borne out, though progress remained uneven.

  • The Organizational Contexts of Development and Use

J. Grudin & M.L. Markus, 2004. In A.B. Tucker (Ed.), Computer science handbook, 2nd edition, chapter 44. CRC.

Reprinted from the 1997 first edition, my first effort to think organizationally on a broad scale.M. Lynne Markus is at Bentley University.

  • Automating Lecture Capture and Broadcast: Technology and Videography (PDF)

Y. Rui, A. Gupta, J. Grudin & L. He, 2004. Multimedia Systems, 10, 1, 3-15.

This system came to be used internally for presentation capture for a time.Yong Rui, Anoop Gupta, and Li-wei He were colleagues at Microsoft Research.

J. Grudin, 2004. In W.S. Bainbridge (Ed.), Berkshire encyclopedia of human-computer interaction, 316-326. Berkshire.

Seeking to understand the CHI-human factors gap, I came to feel that the discretion (or lack of it) in use was at the heart of it.

  • As Users Grow More Savvy: Experiences with a Multimedia Annotation Tool (DOI)

D. Bargeron & J. Grudin, 2004. Proc. HICSS 2004.

Reviewers loved early papers that emphasized the promise of this technology, but it was more difficult to publish the challenges that eventually stopped the research. The full story is published in Grudin & Bargeron 2005.

  • The West Wing: Fiction Can Serve Politics (PDF)

J. Grudin, 2003. Scandinavian Journal of Information Systems, 15,73-77.

Not about the TV show, this makes a case for linking personas to participatory design.

  • Videography for Telepresentations (PDF)

Y. Rui, A. Gupta, J. Grudin & L. He, 2003. Videography for telepresentations. Proc. CHI 2003, 457-464.

More complete study published in Multimedia Systems.

  • Leaders Leading? A Shift in Technology Adoption (PDF)

J. Grudin, 2003. CHI 2003 Extended Abstracts, 930-931.

Once upon a time, managers were not hands-on computer users. Now most are. The change facilitates some things and creates new challenges.

  • Messaging and Formality: Will IM Follow in the Footsteps of Email? (PDF)

T. Lovejoy & J. Grudin, 2003. Proc. INTERACT 2003, 817-820.Observing a pattern in organizational encounters with communication technologies,

Tracey Lovejoy is an ethnographer.

  • Personas, Participatory Design and Product Development: An Infrastructure for Engagement (PDF) ** Most cited Participatory Design Conference paper. **

J. Grudin & J. Pruitt, 2002. Proc. PDC 2002, 144-161.This focuses more on rationale, less on practice than ourDUX 2003 paper and subsequent book chapter.

  • Asynchronous Collaboration around Multimedia Applied to On-demand Education (PDF)

D. Bargeron, J. Grudin, A. Gupta, E. Sanocki, F. Li & S. LeeTiernan, 2002. Journal of MIS, 18, 4, 117-145.

Synthesizes work from several earlier papers.Liz Sanocki is a UX designer and lecturer, Francis Li an interaction designer/software engineer.

  • Group Dynamics and Ubiquitous Computing (PDF)

J. Grudin, 2002. Communications of the ACM, 45, 12, 74-78.

An essay covering social and cognitive aspects of information visibility.

  • Notification for Shared Annotation of Digital Documents (PDF)

A.J.B. Brush, D. Bargeron, A. Gupta & J. Grudin, 2002. Proc. CHI 2002, 89-96.

Shared text annotation in support of development and test teams.

  • Partitioning Digital Worlds: Focal and Peripheral Awareness in Multiple Monitor Use (PDF)

J. Grudin, 2001. Proc. CHI 2001, 458-465.

These issues loom larger as displays grow and information streams proliferate.

  • Asynchronous Collaboration around Multimedia and its Application to On-demand Training (PDF) ** Best Paper Award **

D. Bargeron, A. Gupta, J. Grudin, E. Sanocki & F. Li, 2001. Proc. HICSS 34. Authors’ version.

This paper on the MRAS system was extended in the 2002 Journal of MIS article.

  • Desituating Action: Digital Representation of Context (DOI)

J. Grudin, 2001. Human-Computer Interaction, 16, 2-4, 269-286.

If link is behind a paywall, the author’s version.This invited commentary on a published article was an early approach to what the key issue affecting the uses of digital media, IMO.

  • Seeding, Evolutionary Growth, and Reseeding: The Incremental Development of Collaborative Design Environments

G. Fischer, J. Grudin, R. McCall, J. Ostwald, D. Redmiles, B. Reeves & F. Shipman, 2001. In G.M. Olson, T.W. Malone & J.B. Smith (Eds.), Coordination theory and collaboration technology, 447-472. CRC.

A review of an ambitious embedded knowledge project that eventually collided with the Web.With Gerhard Fischer’s talented group at Colorado.

  • Digitally Mediated Interaction: Technology and the Urge System (PDF)

J. Grudin, 2000. In G. Hatano, N. Okada & H. Tanabe (Eds.), Affective minds, 159-167. Elsevier.

A book in honor of Masanao Toda, author of the wonderful ‘fungus-eater’ and other essays.

  • Presenting to Local and Remote Audiences: Design and Use of the TELEP System (PDF)

G. Jancke, J. Grudin & A. Gupta, 2000. Proc. CHI 2000, 384-391.

Used successfully in Microsoft Research’s large lecture room.

  • Designing Presentations for On-demand Viewing (PDF)

L. He, J. Grudin & A. Gupta, 2000. Proc. CSCW 2000, 127-134.An earlier CHI’99 short paper version: He, Gupta, White & Grudin, Design lessons from deployment of on-demand video.

An analysis of years of data from internal training video use that provided insights into how to organize presentation material.

  • Comparing Presentation Summaries: Slides vs. Reading vs. Listening (PDF)

L. He, E. Sanocki, A. Gupta & J. Grudin, 2000. Proc. CHI 2000, 177-184.

Contrasts four approaches to delivering lecture summaries.

  • Evolving Use of a System for Education at a Distance (DOI)

S. A. White, A. Gupta, J. Grudin, H. Chesley, G. Kimberly & E. Sanocki, 2000. Proc. HICSS 2000.If the link takes you to a paywall, the authors’ version.

A remote lecture support tool evolved through use in internal training courses.

  • Auto-Summarization of Audio-Video Presentations (PDF) ** Best Paper Award **

L. He, E. Sanocki, A. Gupta & J. Grudin, 1999. Proc. MultiMedia 99, 489-498.

Automation of video highlight extraction. This complements the 1999 time-compression paper below.

  • Meeting at the Desktop: An Empirical Study of Virtually Collocated Teams (PDF)

G. Mark, J. Grudin & S. E. Poltrock, 1999. Proc. ECSCW’99, 159-178.

Case study of successful desktop conferencing adoption in the 1990s.

Gloria Mark is on the faculty of UC Irvine, Steve Poltrock and I have long collaborated.

  • CSCW and Groupware: Their History and Trajectory

J. Grudin, 1999. In Y. Matsushita (Ed.), Designing Communication and collaboration support systems, 1-15. Taylor & Francis.

Five years after early surveys, an update.

J. Grudin & S.E. Poltrock, 1999. In J. G. Webster (Ed.), Encyclopedia of electrical and electronics engineering, vol. 8, 512-523. Wiley.

An encyclopedia article mostly distilled from our 1997 survey.

  • Has the Ice Man Arrived? Tact on the Internet (DOI)

J. Grudin, 1999. IEEE Intelligent Systems, 14, 1, 8-9.

The complexity of the effects of awareness and visibility discussed here are still under-appreciated.

  • Design Lessons from Deployment of On-demand Video (PDF)

L. He, A. Gupta, S. White & J. Grudin, 1999. CHI 99 Extended Abstracts, 276-277.

For a more complete account see He, Grudin & Gupta (2000), Designing presentations for on-demand viewing.

  • Annotations for Streaming Video on the Web (PDF)

D. Bargeron, A. Gupta, J. Grudin & E. Sanocki, 1999. CHI 99 Extended Abstracts, 278-279.

The MRAS (asynchronous lecture annotation) system and first study. Subsequent papers listed above are better sources, such as Multimedia Annotation…

  • Evolving Use of a System for Education at a Distance (PDF)

S. A. White, A. Gupta, J. Grudin, H. Chesley, G. Kimberly & E. Sanocki, 1999. CHI 99 Extended Abstracts, 274-275.

More complete version, same title, published in 2000 (above).

  • Computer-Supported Cooperative Work and Groupware

J. Grudin & S.E. Poltrock, 1997. In M. Zelkowitz (Ed.), Advances in Computers Vol. 45, 269-320, 1997. Academic Press.

  • Design Models for Computer-Human Interfaces (DOI)

D.R. Gentner & J. Grudin, 1996. IEEE Computer, 29, 6, 28-35.If the link takes you to a paywall, the authors’ version.

The evolution of technologies digital and non-digital.Don Gentner was a friend and collaborator from my first months in graduate school until he died in 2005.

  • Evaluating Opportunities for Design Capture (PDF)

J. Grudin, 1996. In T. Moran & J. Carroll (Eds.), Design rationale: concepts, techniques, and use, 453-470. Erlbaum.

Adds a fourth development context to those in my 1991 Computer article.

  • Readings in Human-Computer Interaction: Toward the Year 2000

R.M. Baecker, J. Grudin, W.A.S. Buxton & S. Greenberg (Eds.), 1995. Morgan Kaufmann.

Writing topic overviews consumed years and several journal article equivalents of analysis and insight.Two of these Canadian luminaries tired of my requests that they update their previous edition and invited me to join them.

  • Organizational Obstacles to Interface Design and Development: Two Participant-Observer Studies (PDF)

S.E. Poltrock & J. Grudin, 1994. ACM Transactions on Computer-Human Interaction, 1, 1, 52-80.

My first large-scale qualitative study. Some of the anguished remarks that we quoted could be heard today.

  • Interface: An Evolving Concept (PDF)

J. Grudin, 1993 Communications of the ACM, 36, 1, 102-111.

Unintended consequences of terminology choices.

  • Consistency, Standards, and Formal Approaches to Interface Development and Evaluation: A Note on Wiecha, Bennett, Boies, Gould & Greene (PDF)

J. Grudin, 1992. ACM Transactions on Information Systems, 10, 1, 1164-1173.

A misleading description of my 1989 consistency case led me to further develop it.

  • Groupware and Cooperative Work: Problems and Prospects

J. Grudin, 1990. In B. Laurel (Ed.), The art of human-computer interface design, 171-185. Addison Wesley.Reprinted in R. Baecker (Ed.), Readings in groupware and computer supported cooperative work. Morgan Kaufmann, 1995.

A concise account of challenges and a cautious forecast. The only article I’ve revisited without wanting to wordsmith.

  • Why CSCW Applications Fail: Problems in the design and Evaluation of Organizational Interfaces (PDF) ** CSCW Lasting Impact Award, presented at CSCW 2014. **

J. Grudin, 1988. Proc. CSCW 88, 85-93.A revision, with ‘groupware’ replacing ‘CSCW applications,’ is in Office: Technology and People, 4, 3, 1989, 245-264. In the pre-digital-library era, conference papers were often republished in journals.)

Further reading: Successful adoption, 2002 paper with Leysia Palen.

By Philip Guo
April 10, 2013
Comments (2)

An undergrad recently sent me the following email: "I was thinking today that I would like to learn more about what HCI research involves. Can you recommend any papers for me to read?"

I decided to follow Matt Might's advice and write a public blog post about this topic rather than just replying privately to this student.

(Disclaimer: HCI is a very diverse field, so I obviously don't claim to speak for all HCI researchers. If you asked ten randomly-selected HCI researchers to write this post, you will get ten different answers.)


What Is HCI Research?

To me, research in HCI (Human-Computer Interaction) involves

  • understanding how humans interact with computers, and
  • creating new and effective ways for humans to interact with computers.

Here, the term "computer" can refer to a desktop machine, laptop, tablet, mobile phone, digital eyewear, or an assortment of other electronic devices; it can also refer to both software and hardware running on these devices.

Some HCI research involves doing science (i.e., understanding) while others are more focused on engineering (i.e., creating).


Two Examples of HCI Research

There is no way that I can do justice to the entire world of HCI in one blog post, so instead I will present two papers that exemplify some typical characteristics of modern HCI research.

The lead author on both papers is my colleague Joel Brandt, who performed this work while he was a Ph.D. student in the Stanford Computer Science Department. At the time, Joel's focus within HCI was on how programmers (humans!) interact with computer software used throughout the programming process (e.g., IDEs, debuggers, Web browsers).


Paper 1: Understanding how programmers use Web resources

I'll first discuss Two Studies of Opportunistic Programming: Interleaving Web Foraging, Learning, and Writing Code (Brandt et al., CHI 2009). This paper was published at CHI, a notable academic conference for HCI research.

The research described by this paper is an example of "understanding how humans interact with computers." Specifically, Joel and his colleagues sought to understand how programmers interact with digital resources found on the Web.

To do so, the research team performed two studies:

  1. Lab study: They invited 20 programmers into a computer lab one at a time, gave each subject a two-hour-long programming task, and watched how the subject used Web resources while programming. Drawing from direct observations of these 20 subjects in a controlled lab setting, the team observed three main forms of interaction with Web resources -- learning, clarification, and reminder -- and described the unique aspects of each form in their paper.
  2. Query log analysis: The team wanted to validate whether these observations generalize beyond their small and relatively homogeneous population of 20 lab subjects, who were all Stanford students. Working with industry colleagues at Adobe, they obtained a data set containing over 100,000 queries made by over 24,000 programmers to a custom search engine for Adobe programming tools. They parsed and analyzed the data to discover insights that supported observations from their prior lab study.

These two studies complement and reinforce one another: The first provides a great level of detail (direct human observation) but a small sample size (N=20). The second provides little detail (search queries) but a large sample size (N=24,000). By reading both studies in the paper, you can understand the relative strengths and weaknesses of each approach.

The findings presented by HCI studies such as the ones in this paper serve two roles: They contribute to the body of scientific knowledge about a form of human-computer interaction (e.g., Web usage during programming). And they inspire researchers to create new kinds of tools to improve such interactions.

For example, the findings in this paper suggest ways that existing IDEs can be augmented to help programmers better leverage Web resources. These findings directly inspired Joel's next research project, which led to ...


Paper 2: Creating a better way for programmers to leverage example code from the Web

A year after his prior paper, Joel published Example-Centric Programming: Integrating Web Search into the Development Environment (Brandt et al., CHI 2010).

The research described by this paper is an example of "creating new and effective ways for humans to interact with computers." Here, Joel and his colleagues sought to create a new and better way for programmers to use snippets of example code they find on the Web.

To do so, Joel spent a summer internship at Adobe building a plug-in for Adobe Flash Builder, which embeds a domain-specific search engine within the IDE:

(screenshot source)

This system, called Blueprint, combines an IDE plugin and custom search engine to enable new kinds of user interactions such as

  • instant Web search without leaving the IDE's code editor,
  • browsing through search results that are automatically formatted in a "code-centric" format, which is more useful to programmers than plain Web pages,
  • fast copy-and-paste of retrieved example code snippets into the user's code base,
  • and links between the copied code and its source, to support notifications if the source gets updated.

The first half of this paper describes how Joel used insights from the studies in his prior paper to design the Blueprint system. The second half describes two studies that the team ran to show that Blueprint was effective:

  1. User study: They recruited 20 professional programmers at Adobe to perform a series of programming tasks in a controlled lab setting. They let half the participants use the Blueprint system (treatment group) and the other half use an ordinary Web browser (control group). They then compared the performance of participants in both groups on metrics such as time to complete each task and resulting code quality.
  2. Longitudinal study: To understand how Blueprint is used in real-world settings, the team deployed the system to over 2,000 users over a three-month time span. They recorded 17,000 queries made by these users and analyzed the contents of those queries to discover insights that complemented their user study findings.

Finally, a customary way to end these sorts of papers is by discussing current limitations of the system and some ideas for future work.


Conclusion and Further Reading

These two papers formed the bulk of Joel's 2010 Ph.D. dissertation. His research started in a university lab at Stanford, continued during summer internships at Adobe, and eventually turned into a feature within a commercial software product (Blueprint) that thousands of people use on a daily basis. I like presenting this work because it's a good example of how HCI research can be done in both academia and industry, and can range from scientific studies to the development of practical tools.

Joel's work is just the tip of the iceberg, though. Besides studying the interaction between humans and computers, there is a lot of HCI research that explores how humans interact with one another via computers. For example, projects might involve

Reading the four papers mentioned in this blog post will give you a sense of how HCI papers are structured. Enjoy!


May 01, 2013 12:53

HCI research: I ask 10 different researchers and get 15 different answers!
What about theoretical models for HCI. It may reduce the dimensions.

Elizabeth Churchill
May 06, 2013 03:44

Some nice points in this post, thanks. Responding to your anonymous commenterHCI is indeed a diverse field that moves with the times...so, as technologies change so do some (but not all) of the research foci.

The SIGCHI Executive Committee has been looking into HCI as a field in a project focused on HCI Education. We've written an interim report which is accessible from our website (http://www.sigchi.org/). The results are also summarised on the interactions website (see http://interactions.acm.org/archive/view/march-april-2013/teaching-and-learning-human-computer-interaction).

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