Handout 6: 1/18/06

Computer-Human Interaction
CPSC 436-500

Assignment 3

Due Monday, April 3, 2006
Class presentations on 4/3 and 4/5

This is a group project, to be carried out by a self-formed group of 3 students. Choose one of the three options below. I also will consider proposals for other options--let me know if there is a different interface that your group would prefer to investigate.

Option one: Conflict-resolving remote control

Consider the situation presented when several people are watching the same TV. Further assume that each has a remote control. How can you prevent chaos from resulting as each selects his/her favorite programs?

The assignment is to design a personal remote controller. Besides functions relating to setting the TV channel, the controller must support functions that respond to conflicting requests--for example, what should happen when one viewer wants to switch from a channel that others are watching?

Your group should turn in a written report that:

  1. Describes the environment in which the controller will be used and analyzes the design decisions that need to be addressed.
  2. Presents your design.
  3. Explains the rationale behind the design decisions.
  4. Includes a short (about one page) use scenario.
A copy of the report should be on your Web page.

In addition, prepare a single PowerPoint slide of the design to show to the class (Web-accessible to speed up loading).

Option two: Audio book reader

Standard audio books simply play from the beginning of the book to the end. It would seem that a customized hardware/software interface could do much better--could allow a reading experience that was closer to that encountered when reading paper books. Think about some of the ways in which you use books (e.g., skipping through pages, marking a spot by folding down a page corner, underlining and other kinds of annotations, etc.). Design an audio interface that provides similar functionality.

Your group should turn in a written report that:

  1. Describes the environment in which the controller will be used and analyzes the design decisions that need to be addressed.
  2. Presents your design.
  3. Explains the rationale behind the design decisions.
  4. Includes a short (about one page) use scenario.
A copy of the report should be on your Web page.

In addition, prepare a single PowerPoint slide of the design to show to the class (Web-accessible to speed up loading).

Option three: Icon/logo design

Your group should design a set of nine related icons reflecting a set of three topics and a set of three target user groups. Each icon should fit within a one inch square. The three topics (and a brief definition of the area) are:

The three target user groups are:

For example, your first icon would represent the concept of "humanities informatics" to the general public, your second to elementary school children, and your third to visually impaired people. In your next set, you'd represent the concept of "digital library", and so on. so on.

Your group should turn in a written report that:

  1. Analyzes the similarities and differences among the three topic areas and among the three user groups.
  2. Presents your design.
  3. Explains the rationale behind the designs, especially the overall philosophy that you used for each topic and group and how the similarities/differences are reflected in the design.
  4. Discusses alternatives that were considered.
In addition, prepare a single PowerPoint slide of the design to show to the class (Web-accessible to speed up loading). Also include the logos' image files on your course Web site.