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1798RE: [agile-usability] QWERTY, mouse, and novel input

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  • Jade Ohlhauser
    Dec 7, 2005
    • 0 Attachment
      And here I thought you had stopped following this list, Robin :) *
      I think a challenge to this discussion is that the knowledge a lot of people desire is about the details. I personally believe it's not the big ideas that make the most difference on real world projects, it's the hundreds of little things.
      Let me put it another way. A while ago I was at the (good) CANUX conference in Banff (http://www.flickr.com/photos/tags/creativecanux/). There was various presentations on various subjects, but the ones that really stood out for me were the case studies. I saw their analysis studies, their interesting life-size cardboard personas covered in multi-color post-its, etc. To me those "facts" were more interesting and more useful than the academic arguments.
      Unfortunately I don't have any suggestions for this list re: that.
      Anyway, Ron said:
      "... the hardest part of software development (in a team) isn't
      the technology, the architecture, or the interaction design: it's the
      people aspect of working in a team and working with those outside of
      the team proper."
      I agree, one topic I'd enjoy going into deeper is documentation. At our shop documentation and mockups/prototypes are a key part of the relationship between usability and development and the agileness of both. We started down this road with the wiki discussion. Anyone else?
      Jade Ohlhauser
      Product Manager
      RPM Software                                 
      www.rpmsoftware.com 403-265-6727 x704
      * Disclaimer: we worked together for a year and a half, but it felt much longer (in a good way)

      From: agile-usability@yahoogroups.com [mailto:agile-usability@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Dymond, Robin
      Sent: Wednesday, December 07, 2005 8:36 AM
      To: agile-usability@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: RE: [agile-usability] QWERTY, mouse, and novel input

      Well, you won't find me trading my mouse for a touch screen and a chop
      stick any time soon!

      I agree with Larry, our systems are built within a context, the idea of
      building an enterprise app with something other than a keyboard and
      mouse is quixotic.

      How come no one in this group is discussing ideas on integrating
      usability and agile?

      Agile is rapidly gaining adoption across the software industry, for
      example Microsoft has recently become a strong proponent of Scrum and is
      promoting it with their development tools. How are you integrating agile
      methods with usability ideas on a daily basis? Are you? Or do you have
      waterfall processes, in which the IAs do usability as part of the
      "Design" process, with mockups from photoshop, that may or may not
      become actual software?

      This group has been a bit of a disappointment. I think there is lots of
      work to be done. Usability practitioners will benefit from better
      integration with agile teams building better software quickly. But teams
      will adopt Agile with or without usability practitioners or their ideas
      on board.

      But maybe, with all of the good feedback agile teams get from working
      closely with a customer, usability is inherent, and IAs are largely
      irrelevant for most projects?


      Robin Dymond

      -----Original Message-----
      From: agile-usability@yahoogroups.com
      [mailto:agile-usability@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Joshua Seiden
      Sent: Tuesday, December 06, 2005 7:45 PM
      To: agile-usability@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: RE: [agile-usability] QWERTY, mouse, and novel input

      Larry wrote:

      > Interestingly, both the keyboard and mouse have been roundly
      > criticized, yet have proved surprisingly robust as general purpose HMI

      > devices. Research has found that nothing else works quite as well for
      > so many purposes under so many conditions, although other mechanisms
      > may be better in highly specific circumstances.


      > Bill Buxton distinguishes imitating physical reality in
      > GUI design from using externally learned skills and
      > associations within the framework of effective interaction
      > idioms.

      Josh replies: Buxton also said (at your last forUSE conference)
      like this: as long as we are interacting with the computer using a
      mouse, we
      are interacting with the world using the equivalent of the point of a
      chopstick. That gives us the manipulative power of a fruitfly!

      To be fair, this was in the context of a discussion of the limits of
      purpose devices and general purpose computing.


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