Friday, October 6 at 10.15 - 12.00 in room E34,
Lindstedtsvägen 3, 3rd floor
Dr. Thea van der Geest, University of Twente, the Netherlands "Communicative
quality of web sites"
In the last few years, the Communication Studies group of the University
of Twente has started a number of projects on evaluating the communicative
quality of web sites. We see making web sites as a communicative
design process, in which evaluation in all stages of the design
is essential. In this seminar I would like to discuss that topic
while at the same time presenting some of the projects we are involved
Web site evaluation (i.e. assessing the quality of a site) can focus
on many different aspects of quality. The quality of a site can
be perceived from four different perspectives, each of which leads
to different evaluation research questions:
1, Product quality
2. Process quality
3. Quality according to the "sender"
4. Quality according to the "receiver".
With a new and rapidly developing medium like the web, there is
still little empirical evidence for "what works" on the
web, and what not. Nevertheless, designers and producers of web
sites cannot wait until all their questions are answered. In practice,
they often exercise so-called informed design judgement. They have
to learn from others who reflect on their design decisions.
In the project Web site design is communication design we interviewed
designers and managers responsible for web sites of smaller and
larger organisations (amongst others Microsoft and Amazon). Their
process approach and reflections (both on process and product) lead
to a process-oriented checklist for web designers and producers,
taking into account the organisational context in which web sites
Designers and producers of sites often use checklists, guidelines
or principles (indicated with the term heuristics), many of which
are published on the internet. The value of the heuristics they
resort to is often unclear. In the project Web heuristics (with
colleagues from the University of Washington in Seattle), we tried
to define five sets of heuristics for informational web sites on
topics which are important from a communicative point of view: role
playing, navigation, comprehensibility, information display and
data collection. The sets of heuristics were developed in an iterative
design process. Besides, we tried to make explicit how practitioners
can make well-grounded choices among the many heuristics available.
When so much is yet to be studied, it is important to develop design
and evaluation methods which are feasible for practitioners. In
the near future we hope to conduct a number of studies specifically
on the information structure of large on-line documents. The new
media claim to offer flexibility: different routes for various audience
groups or different contexts of use. That claim has not been very
well supported so far. Most large on-line documents (including large
web sites) have a traditional hierarchical structure, with a table
of contents and a search engine as its prominent access mechanisms.
We would like to study the effects of applying information structure
design methods (like card sorting, task analysis or user scenarios)
on the information structure and the actual use of such large on-line
Kerstin Severinson Eklundh
The CVAP seminar list at http://www.nada.kth.se/
cvap/seminars/cvap-seminar.html is now updated with the seminars
of fall 2000. The first seminar, 'Robot Navigation based on Curve
Evolution and Normal Flow', will be held October 11 by Mohamed Elayyadi.
Här kommer en inbjudan till en kväll om akademiskt entreprenörsskap
på Karolinska institutet onsdagen den 11 oktober, arrangerad
av Venture Cup. Under kvällen kommer det att diskuteras kring
skydd av forskningsidéer och
vem som äger forskningsidén. Dessutom kommer representanter
från olika forskningsföretag att berätta om deras
väg från idé till företag. Och...
det bjuds på förfriskningar och buffé.
För mer information, ring 08 674 11 60 eller surfa till www.venturecup.org.
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