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Taking Affect into Consideration: Iterative User-Centered Design for an Affective and Ambiguous Mobile Application
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Mathematics and Computer Science, Department of Information Technology.
2011 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (professional degree), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This thesis considers issues that may arise when designing interactive systems for users when not only usability is considered in the interface design process, but when the purpose of a system is its ambiguity and when it is important that users have the ability to read their own personal meaning from the representations in the system. The system treated in the thesis is called Affective Health. It is a lifestyle system which is supposed to aid users in reflecting over their stress. The system uses biofeedback data which is collected through sensors attached to the user’s body which then is presented to the user on a mobile device. Users should be able to identify stressful situations instantly, but also historically by reviewing periods of time and identify peaks of stress.

In seven user-studies the system is tested both in respect to ambiguity and how this fulfills the purpose of the system and in respect to usability. The user tests are part  of an iterative user-centered system design methodology which means that the system was being developed between the user tests based on the feedback given from the each test.

The tests are summarized and the systems strengths and shortcomings are analyzed in respect of purpose and usability. Based on this the challenges of developing and evaluating systems that demand graphical interfaces that may impinge on usability are discussed. It concludes that usability goals shouldn’t be neglected as this may inhibit the evaluation of the systems underlying purpose.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
UPTEC STS, ISSN 1650-8319 ; 11 002
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-157182OAI: diva2:435473
Educational program
Systems in Technology and Society Programme
Available from: 2011-08-18 Created: 2011-08-18 Last updated: 2011-08-18Bibliographically approved

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