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Spring2004 Midterm Review: User Interface
1) Not all people K-12 can read so an alternative method to communicate how to interact with the system is needed, one example is a "demo" mode similiar to video games in an arcade which do not include a manual
2) Visual acuity and hand-eye coordination is probably reduced so try to avoid small fonts and small targets to be clicked on with the mouse
3) Use a heuristic evaluation to check the UI against standard user-interface guidelines or use a cognitive walkthough to figure out if the system makes sense. After the user, use questionnaires or interviews with the user to find out which parts of the system should be changed and which parts should stay the same.
4) A cognitive walkthrough consists of an informal description of being the user and wolding through the interface to perform a task. It's useful before the user has a chance to interact with the system to figure out if the system makes sense.
5) The interface draws the user's attention toward the task that is least common, and any use of the interface makes invisible that the least common (and least often desired) activity - changing the time - has even occurred.
6) Use the iterative method:
- Requirements gathering
- Build a prototype
- Evaluate the prototype
2) Also, senior citizens are for the most part "out of the loop" in terms of technology, so you need to dumb it down – instead of having them use combinations of key presses, let them use the monitor itself.
I wouldn't call what you're saying dumbing it down. It's more like consistency. A complicated set of keystrokes is inconsistent on a system with so many pretty clickable objects. Because they aren't experienced with computers, they haven't learned these inconsistencies and will expect things to work as they are presented to them.