Handout 4: 1/18/06
Assignment 1: Interface scavenger hunt
Due Monday, January 23, 2006 (class presentation also)
Put your name and email addresses on materials turned in
Interface scavenger hunt (individual project)
Creating effective user interfaces can be difficult. Moreover, the desirable
characteristics of an interface reflects external factors such as audience,
task, and culture. This holds equally for computer-based and physically-based
Consequently, for any specific function, there are many different designs that
can be used to allow access.
The assignment is to choose a specific function (computer or physical) and then
to find two existing interface implementations that allow it to be carried out.
Ideally, the two will be substantially different. Obtain images (e.g., screen
dumps, photographs) of the implementations in use. Which of the
implementations seems "better": why and for whom? Why do you think the
different implementations are the way they are, especially the "worse" one?
What to turn in:
- Short (i.e., less than one page) summary of what you found.
- Printouts of related photos, screen dumps, etc.
- Make a one slide PowerPoint presentation and be prepared to show it in
class. (The slide should be accessible on the Web so it can be loaded
- Put the same materials on your course Web page.
Assignment 1 has two independent components to prepare, the presentation in
class and the in-class presentation. The in-class presentations will all be
done on the same day. There should be around 14 or 15 presentations, so each
presentation will have to be limited to a few minutes in order to get through
them all in the class period.
Oral presentation evaluation
The oral presentation evaluation criteria are:
- Presentation logistics
- Effective use of time. Presentation focuses on the relevant points rather
than irrelevant points.
- Keeps within allotted time.
- Presentation set-up doesn't require a significant amount of time.
- Presentation content
- Presentation makes it clear what task the interfaces are supposed to
- Presentation makes it clear how the interfaces operate.
- Presentation makes it clear what the differences are.
- Presentation includes analysis of the comparative strengths and weaknesses
of each interface.
Written report presentation
- Report properly identified: name and email address.
- Printed report turned in.
- Electronic version of report included on your Web site.
- Includes required photos, screen dumps, etc.
- Includes the components discussed above: what the task is, how the
interfaces address the task, what the differences are, and what your analysis
is of the comparative strengths and weaknesses.
- Summary is concise.