Interfaces need to go beyond usability

“‘In the field of Human-Computer Interaction, the measure of a tool or application’s success is most often based on whether its intended users can perform their task objectives easily and efficiently. Traditional user-centred design approaches and techniques work in service to these objectives, but in a cultural product whose task is to address issues of self-definition or expression, this may be the wrong mind-set.’ (…)
Interfaces are becoming increasingly social as they mediate more social activities (such as conversations) in more sophisticated ways. This makes them cultural products. We already attribute social behaviors to our interfaces, and this trend is growing. (…) It is not enough for interfaces or designs to be merely usable. They also must be desirable, useful, needed, understandable, and appropriate. They also need to be human, which implies vast diversity.”

From: Shedroff, N. (2003), ‘Research methods for designing effective experiences’ in: ed. Laurel, B.: Design Research: Methods and Perspectives, Minneapolis: The MIT Press


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