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User-Centred Systems Design: Designing Usable Interactive Systems in Practice
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Mathematics and Computer Science, Department of Information Technology, Division of Human-Computer Interaction. Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Mathematics and Computer Science, Department of Information Technology, Human-Computer Interaction.
2004 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)Alternative title
Användarcentrerad systemdesign : Design av användbara interaktiva system i praktiken (Swedish)
Abstract [en]

Have you ever been frustrated with that IT system at work that does not behave the way you expect it to? Or had problems with using the features on your new mobile phone? When systems and appliances do not support us in what we are doing, and do not behave the way we expect them to, then usability is neglected. Poor usability may be frustrating and irritating when trying out your mobile phone, but in a critical work situation poor usability may be disastrous.

In this thesis, user-centred systems design (UCSD) is advocated as an approach for facilitating the development of usable interactive systems. Systems that suit their intended use and users do not just “emerge”. They are the result of a UCSD process and a user-centred attitude during the development. This means in short that the real users and their needs, goals, context of use, abilities and limitations, drive the development – in contrast to technology-driven development. We define UCSD as: a process focusing on usability throughout the entire development process and further throughout the system life cycle. I argue that this definition along with a set of key principles do help organisations and individual projects in the process of developing usable interactive systems. The key principles include the necessity of having an explicit focus on users and making sure that users are actively involved in the process.

The thesis provides knowledge and insights gained from real-life situations about what UCSD is and how it can be put into practice. The most significant results are: the proposal of a clear definition of UCSD and a set of key principles encompassing UCSD; a process for usability design and the usability designer role. Furthermore, design cases from different domains are provided as examples and illustrations.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis , 2004. , p. 80
Series
Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Science and Technology, ISSN 1104-232X ; 981
Keywords [en]
user-centred systems design, usability, human-computer interaction, system development, user involvement, usability design
National Category
Information Systems
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-4273ISBN: 91-554-5975-7 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-4273DiVA, id: diva2:164639
Public defence
2004-06-01, Room 211, MIC, Polacksbacken Hus 1, Uppsala, 13:15
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2004-04-29 Created: 2004-04-29 Last updated: 2018-01-13Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Key Principles for User-Centred Systems Design
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Key Principles for User-Centred Systems Design
Show others...
2003 In: Behaviour & Information Technology, Vol. 22, no 6, p. 397-409Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-91782 (URN)
Available from: 2004-04-29 Created: 2004-04-29Bibliographically approved
2. The Usability Design Process: Integrating User-Centred Systems Design in the Software Development Process
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The Usability Design Process: Integrating User-Centred Systems Design in the Software Development Process
2003 In: Software Process: Improvement and Practice, Vol. 8, no 2Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-91783 (URN)
Available from: 2004-04-29 Created: 2004-04-29Bibliographically approved
3. Usability Design: Extending Rational Unified Process with a New Discipline
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Usability Design: Extending Rational Unified Process with a New Discipline
2003 In: Interactive Systems: Design, Specification and Verification, 10th International Workshop, DSV-IS 2003, Funchal, Madeira Island, Portugal, June 2003, Revised Papers, LNCS 2844, 2003, p. 316-330Chapter in book (Other academic) Published
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-91784 (URN)3-540-20159-9 (ISBN)
Available from: 2004-04-29 Created: 2004-04-29Bibliographically approved
4. The Lonesome Cowboy: A Study of the Usability Designer Role in Systems Development
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The Lonesome Cowboy: A Study of the Usability Designer Role in Systems Development
2006 (English)In: Interacting with computers, ISSN 0953-5438, E-ISSN 1873-7951, Vol. 18, no 4, p. 601-634Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper reports on an evaluation of the usability designer role as applied in two Swedish systems development organisations. The role was initially defined by us, but evolved in these two organisations. We conducted interviews with usability designers, project managers and a user representative. Our main research question was whether or not the introduction of a usability designer has been successful in terms of changes in the systems development process and the impact the role has had on products, projects and organisations. To some extent, the role has met our expectations and intentions for instance, in helping the usability designers shift their focus towards design, and assume some kind of "users' advocate" role. But in other ways, the role "failed". The usability designers in our study are still facing the kind of problems and obstacles that usability professionals have always had to deal with.

Keywords
user-centred systems design; UCSD; usability; usability practitioner; usability professional; software development
National Category
Computer and Information Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-76432 (URN)10.1016/j.intcom.2005.10.003 (DOI)000238876500005 ()
Available from: 2006-03-21 Created: 2006-03-21 Last updated: 2018-01-13Bibliographically approved
5. A User-Centred Approach to Object-Oriented User Interface Design
Open this publication in new window or tab >>A User-Centred Approach to Object-Oriented User Interface Design
2001 In: Designing Interactive Systems: Object Modeling and User Interface Design, 2001Chapter in book (Other academic) Published
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-91786 (URN)0-201-65789-9 (ISBN)
Available from: 2004-04-29 Created: 2004-04-29Bibliographically approved
6. Reengineering the Systems Development Process for User Centred Design
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Reengineering the Systems Development Process for User Centred Design
2001 In: Human-Computer Interaction, INTERACT ‘01, p. 359-366Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-91787 (URN)
Available from: 2004-04-29 Created: 2004-04-29Bibliographically approved
7. The Re-Design of a PDA-based System for Supporting People with Parkinson’s Disease
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The Re-Design of a PDA-based System for Supporting People with Parkinson’s Disease
2005 (English)In: People and Computers XVIII — Design for Life: Proceedings of HCI 2004, Springer London, 2005, p. 181-196Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

This paper describes the re-design of the user interface and the interaction for the PDA-based (Personal Digital Assistant) system mediPal. The aim with the system is to help people with Parkinson’s disease to a better life by supporting them in their day-to-day struggle with their chronic illness. In the paper we discuss the re-design — the process and the resulting user interface. The focus is on the evaluation of an earlier version of the system and how that led up to an improved user interface through user-centred systems design (UCSD). The paper also discusses how a practitioner can accomplish UCSD in the context of product development and consultant work.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer London, 2005
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-91788 (URN)10.1007/1-84628-062-1_12 (DOI)978-1-85233-900-5 (ISBN)978-1-84628-062-7 (ISBN)
Conference
Eight Conference on HCI, 2004
Available from: 2004-04-29 Created: 2004-04-29 Last updated: 2013-06-18Bibliographically approved
8. The Design Of A Smart Card-Based Home-Help System
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The Design Of A Smart Card-Based Home-Help System
2001 In: Human-Computer Interaction, INTERACT ‘01Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-91789 (URN)
Available from: 2004-04-29 Created: 2004-04-29Bibliographically approved
9. A Teleradiology System Design Case
Open this publication in new window or tab >>A Teleradiology System Design Case
1997 In: DIS’97 Conference Proceedings of the ACM Special Interest Group in Computer-Human Interaction (SIGCHI), p. 27-30Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-91790 (URN)
Available from: 2004-04-29 Created: 2004-04-29Bibliographically approved

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Citation style
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  • Other style
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