ByNehi Okungbowa IntroductionAlthough theoriginal academic home for HCI was computer science, and its original focus wason personal productivity applications, mainly text editing and spreadsheets,the field has constantly diversified and outgrown all boundaries (Bannon, 1991).It quickly expanded to encompass visualization, information systems,collaborative systems, the system development process, and many areas ofdesign.
HCI is taught now in many departments/faculties that addressinformation technology, including psychology, design, communication studies,cognitive science, information science, science and technology studies,geographical sciences, management information systems, and industrial,manufacturing, and systems engineering. HCI research and practice draws uponand integrates all of these perspectives.Human-computerinteraction (HCI) is an area of research and practice that emerged in the early1980s, initially as a specialty area in computer science embracing cognitivescience and human factors engineering. HCI has expanded rapidly and steadilyfor three decades, attracting professionals from many other disciplines andincorporating diverse concepts and approaches (Byrne, Wood,Sukaviriya, Foley, & Kieras, 1994). To aconsiderable extent, HCI now aggregates a collection of semi-autonomous fieldsof research and practice in human-centered informatics. However, the continuingsynthesis of disparate conceptions and approaches to science and practice inHCI has produced a dramatic example of how different epistemologies andparadigms can be reconciled and integrated in a vibrant and productiveintellectual project.EmpiricalSoftware development relies heavily on iterative prototyping and empiricaltestingInteractivesystems were the key to progressing beyond early achievements (Shackel, 1997).
These diverse forces of need and opportunity converged around 1980, focusing ahuge burst of human energy and creating a highly visible interdisciplinaryproject.The goal ofinteraction design is to create products that enable the user to achieve theirobjectives in the best way possible.Until the late1970s, the only humans who interacted with computers were information technologyprofessionals and dedicated hobbyists. This changed disruptively with theemergence of personal computing in the later 1970s.
Personal computing,including both personal software (productivity applications, such as texteditors and spreadsheets, and interactive computer games) and personal computerplatforms (operating systems, programming languages, and hardware), madeeveryone in the world a potential computer user, and vividly highlighted thedeficiencies of computers with respect to usability for those who wanted to usecomputers as tools (Zhang,Nah & Preece, 2004)The challenge ofpersonal computing became manifest at an opportune time. The broad project ofcognitive science, which incorporated cognitive psychology, artificialintelligence, linguistics, cognitive anthropology, and the philosophy of mind,had formed at the end of the 1970s. Part of the programme of cognitive sciencewas to articulate systematic and scientifically informed applications to beknown as “cognitive engineering”. Thus, at just the point whenpersonal computing presented the practical need for HCI, cognitive sciencepresented people, concepts, skills, and a vision for addressing such needsthrough an ambitious synthesis of science and engineering. HCI was one of the firstexamples of cognitive engineering (Byrne et al., 1994).In general, userexperience is simply how people feel when they use a product or service. Inmost cases, that product will be a website or an application of some form.
Every instance of human-object interaction has an associated user experience,but, in general, UX practitioners are interested in the relationship betweenhuman users and computers and computer-based products, such as websites,applications and systems.Usability encompassesthe following aspects: functionality, efficiency, effectiveness, satisfaction, specialusers, specific goals, and specific context of users. Usability refers to thequality of the interaction in terms of parameters such as time taken to performtasks, number of errors made, and time to become competent users (Zhang et al., 2004).Alternatively, usability is a quality attribute that assesses how easy userinterfaces are to use. The usability evaluation stage is an effective method bywhich a software development team can establish the positive and negativeaspects of its prototype releases, and make the required changes before thesystem is delivered to the target users. From the user’s perspective, usabilityis considered a very important aspect in the development process as it can meanthe difference between performing and completing a task in a successful waywithout any frustration is not highlighted in website design, then users willbecome very frustrated working with it.
For example,according to Nielsen Shackel (1997), people will leave thewebsite: (a) If it isdifficult to use; (b) If the usersget lost on a website; (c) The information is hard to read; (d) it does notanswer users’ key questions; (e) and lastly,if the homepage fails to defi ne the purpose and the goals of the website.” Usabilityrules the web. Simply stated, if the customer cannot find a product, then hewill not buy it. In addition, the web is the ultimate customer-empoweringenvironment. He who clicks the mouse gets to decide everything. It is so easyto go elsewhere; all the competitors in the world are but a mouse-click away” (Dix, Finlay, Abowd& Bealle, 2004). The causal framework of usabilityto shows a relationship between task, user and system characteristics asindependent variables and user reaction as dependent variable. Various principles need to be followed inorder to support usability, making systemsThese principlesare• Learnability:by which new users can begin effective interaction and achieve maximalperformance;• Flexibility:the multiplicity of ways the user and system exchange information;• Robustness:the level of support provided to the user in determining successful achievementand assessment of goals;• Efficiency:once the user learns about the system can perform the tasks;• Memorability:how easily the user will remember the system functions, after aperiod time ofnot using it;The goal ofinteraction design is to create products that enable the user to achieve theirobjectives in the best way possible.
The interactionbetween a user and a product often involves elements like aesthetics, motion,sound, space et. Aspects of interaction design: words-, button labels- shouldbe meaningful and easy to understand, visual representations – images,topography and icons should supplement words to communicate with users,physical objects or space- what physical objects do users interact with thesystem? Is it accessible from a smartphone? Appearance- does it give a clueabout the product (Smith& Green, 1980). Interaction designers developwireframes or protypes to layout interaction in the product. Interactive Prototypefor Hospitalrun Redesign: User Reflection Patient:Register and book an appointmentThe traditional approach to seekingappointment with doctors is one of the few things that I had wished could bedone differently. Having to literally travel and visit the place hoping thatyou would actually find fi the place is on or even if the doctor is availablewas considerably a challenge, especially if a person has to travel a longerdistance. The problem deepens when a patient fails to even secure anappointment with the doctor due to a long outside the premise, which sometimesleave patients an attended to due to time limitations.
However, with thisonline booking, I feel like finally someone has answered my wish. I can nowinteract and have my issues addressed whilst at home before the actual visit,which is also guaranteed following the fact that I can schedule appointmentwith the doctor based on certain grounds that are within the doctor’s as wellas my calendar.The interface, right from the ‘register’to within various pages, it was relatively simple and clear, which made it easyto go through and complete the process of booking an appointment online.Navigation is an aspect that I have always considered crucial when it comes towebpages due to the fact that I find it demoralising having to deal withcomplex designs. However, just as it would happen to quite a number of otherpeople, I tend to look for information relatively fast, for which was perfectlyaccounted by the clear, concise, and easily understood navigation within thewebpage; it was relatively easy to locate an option that prompts for newbooking.Even though booking an appointment mayhave relatively easy, which I notice upon completing it, I realised that Icould have spent less time going through the whole process could there beguidelines that direct new users through various navigations. Having optionsthat employ previous search histories and relevant patient records to obtainpatient-specific recommendations and direct new users about how to book anappointment based on what he or she is looking for would be make the entireprocess simple for users. However, I think the ‘popup’ window with appointmentfrom was an integral feature that redirects the attention of the user from thecongested surface with relatively many pages to differentiate to a simple onepage that only prompt for answers.
In conclusion, registering and bookingappointment was made easy by navigations that were clear, concise and easilyunderstandable.Doctor:logging in the system and reviewing patient records then requesting for moreinformationThere are many factors that weredefinitely considered to produce such good level of clarity and simplicity,amongst other features that the design offers to users. The developmentfactors, including platform constraints, tool kits and components libraries,which are normally oriented towards improving visual communication, produced aninterface design that has more quality feature regarding visibility. Right fromthe ‘log in’ platform, the design of the pages is organised; there isconsistency, well organised screen layout, relationships between various pagesand navigability are some of the factors that I noticed to have improved theorganisation of interface.
Regarding consistency, the design features goodinternal, external, and real-world consistencies that feature different kindsof items and behaviour that have their own special appearance. The colour usein most parts of the design provide not only visual effects, but alsoreal-world consistence in which users can relate features of the design withreal-world experiences, observation and perception. For example, whilst sendinga message to a patient that had booked an appointment early and inquire formore information, the severity colours; green, yellow, and red; induces theperception of urgency and importance in the minds of users at both ends tooptimise the accuracy and reliability of information that is sent and received.I believe that this is one of the features that make the design more productivein clinical context.
Besides the screen layout of theinterface that made it easy to locate various feature due to its use of a gridstructure, standardised layout, and group related layout, I think the clear, consistent,and strong relationships between various elements made location of menus anddialogue boxes relatively easy. Due to this screen layout, I was able to easilylocate information about patient bookings with respect to dates and time thatmade it very simple to understand issues for which these patients seeksolutions and respond appropriately with optimised ease. Navigabilitytechniques that feature in the interface also improved its usability. With’popup window’, dialogue boxes, bulleted items, and well-structured forms andtables, the interface an initial focus on patients for the viewer’s attention,direct attention to important or secondary items that further simplifiesnavigation and make the entire process simpler. For example, after navigatingand locating a booking about a patient, clicking on the view provides a popupwindow that offers information in table form and then allow for commencing amessaging conversation with the patient. Therefore, I think logging into theinterface, reviewing patient’s information and inquiring for more informationwas relatively simple due to various features in the interface design that Ihave mentioned earlier in this and the previous paragraph.PatientAdministrator: logging in the system and viewing patient record history As a patient administrator, goodadministrative record keeping practices are some of the areas that I considercrucial to the overall task or responsibility completion. To improve patients’experience as well services that are offered to them, it is imperative thattrack records are kept appropriately to inform nay necessary adjustment totheir plans.
Also, a good record keeping practice makes it relatively easy tohold people accountable and responsible for their actions, which then optimisethe level of efforts that they put into serving patients. As I was logging intothe patient administrator system, I realised that having records about apatient in a central location is not only the positive side of the system butalso the fact that it was relatively easy to locate various items and dialogueboxes and navigate various pages. Navigability techniques that feature in theinterface also improved its usability. The dialogue boxes, bulleted items, andwell-structured forms and tables, allowed the interface initial focus on apatient, directed my attention to important or peripheral items that furthersimplified navigation and made the entire process simple. ReferencesBannon,L.
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