CS 305: Information Design I


Highlights of this lab:

  • What is Information Design
  • In-Lab Activity: Designing Information
  • Metaphor Analysis
  • Information Scenarios
  • Assignment (In your groups)

:: What is Information Design ::

Last week we looked at designing and developing activity scenarios, stories that attempt to address the issues in current design and provide indication for improvement, enhancement, etc. This week we will build on the ideas fleshed out from last week to start thinking of how to design the new designs brought about in last weeks lab for each of your individual group tasks. The technique we will be using follows from the SBD technique and is referred to as Information Design

In information design, we developers attempt to illustrate how the various objects an task actions are represented and arranged on the interface so that they are easily perceived and understood. Design aspects could include numerous elements, such as the design of the application workspace, icons, menus, dialogues, etc.

The key aspect in information design is bridging the gulfs of execution and evaluation

The gulf of execution sees the user form a system goal (insert table), develop an action plan (find and click table icon), and execute (click on the icon and enter in table data). The gulf of evaluation sees the user perceive what is displayed on the the interface (why are there two table icons?), interpret the allowable actions (click one of these table buttons), make sence of what has happened with respect to his task goals (what the heck, what is this float table all about...egads).


:: In-lab Activity: Designing Information ::

It will be great fun....I assure you!


:: Metaphor Analysis ::

This is slightly different then the metaphor analysis done last week. Here, instead of activities, we have information and instead of implications, we have ideas. For example:


:: Information Scenarios ::

Information scenarios describe what the user sees (visual cues, pop-ups, icons, hypertext links, etc), how the users will perceive the information (is it understandable, comprehensible, satisfying), interpret it ("oh, I must click this icon for 'this' to work"), and make sense of it ("Ummm, what happened now??"). They build on both the problem and activity scenarios, using the same actors and activities, etc.


:: Group Assignment ::

Last week we looked at a developing a specific overview of the requirements analysis for your individual group project tasks. This week we are going to delve further into your project by building on the problem scenarios and developing activity scenarios

For this weeks assignment, I would like you to complete a metaphor analysis, create information scenarios related to your group's task, and also complete a claims analysis This is to be a group assignment, but everyone should submit something on web-ct (it should be the same document).

This assignment is due before your next lab. We will be using this assignment as part of your next lab. Please submit your assignment on web-ct before the start of your next lab.


:: References ::