Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV
Time and place:
HCI is the conference of the British HCI Group, formerly known as British Computer Society Human Computer Interaction Specialist Group. The conference has been held annually since 1985. In 1990 and 1999, HCI was incorporated in the INTERACT conference.
The following articles are from "Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV":
Amende, Nadine (2010): A structured review of information visualization success measurement. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 10-16. Available online
Information visualization research has been popular for nearly two decades, but a more widespread adaption of visualization tools is missing. We present a state-of-the-art in measuring information visualization success by means of a structured literature review and a classification framework. This article identifies and classifies 30 empirical journal papers, and consolidates the empirical findings. The review shows an absence of theoretical success models and influence factors as a basis for in-depth success analysis. Dominant research design is that of laboratory experiments which analyze an individual perspective on success. The review results are discussed and a research agenda is proposed.
Riley, Chris, Benyon, David, Johnson, Graham I. and Buckner, Kathy (2010): Security in context: investigating the impact of context on attitudes towards biometric technology. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 108-116. Available online
Biometric technologies are increasingly being used in a diverse range of contexts, from immigration control, to banking and personal computing. However, there has been little research that has investigated how biometrics are perceived across these different environments. This paper describes a qualitative investigation of the effect of context on attitudes towards biometric technology. Data collection was carried out in-situ in a train station, an airport and a retail environment. A categorisation of participants' attitudes towards biometrics is presented based on the data collected. There was little evidence for the perception of biometrics varying across the different locations, though security was found to be a more complex, context dependant notion that expected. The results are discussed with reference to notions of context and the acceptability of biometrics for future applications.
Bradley, Jay, Benyon, David, Mival, Oli and Webb, Nick (2010): Wizard of Oz experiments and companion dialogues. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 117-123. Available online
Novel speech systems such as the conversational agents being developed by the Companions Project (www.companions-project.org) can be simulated using the Wizard of Oz methodology. In this approach technologies that are not yet ready for testing by people are replaced by a human, both for prototyping and collecting additional dialogue data. In the case of Companions we want to observe what it would be like for people interact with a fully functional embodied conversational agent (ECA) and to collect samples of typical dialogue in order to explore, evaluate and model dialogue strategies. One controversial aspect of the Wizard of Oz approach is whether people should be aware that they are interacting with a simulation or whether they should be "fooled" into thinking they are interacting with a real system. Clearly there are ethical issues involved in fooling people, but some argue that unless the participant believes the simulation to be real, the results of any experimentation will not be applicable to the real situation. Over the course of several previous Wizard of Oz experiments our observations suggest that the dialogues produced do not significantly differ whether the participants know that the technology is faked or not. This hypothesis was investigated by collecting dialogues from two groups of participants. One group of participants believed that the Wizard of Oz speech system was in fact a fully computerised prototype and the other group knew that they would be talking through the interface to a hidden person (the wizard). The dialogues were analysed for differences attributable to the participants' beliefs about the system. This analysis was undertaken by an independent "blind" reviewer, a dialogue expert who attempted to allocate participants to one group or the other. His guess was wrong for four out of the six participants. Thus it appears that whether people believe they are interacting with a real system or not does not effect the dialogues and other factors, for example the personality of the person engaged in a dialogue with an ECA, are more important.
Faily, Shamal and Flechais, Ivan (2010): Barry is not the weakest link: eliciting secure system requirements with personas. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 124-132. Available online
Building secure and usable systems means specifying systems for the people using it and the tasks they carry out, rather than vice-versa. User-Centered design approaches encourage an early focus on users and their contexts of use, but these need to be integrated with approaches for engineering secure systems. This paper describes how personas can augment a process for eliciting and specifying requirements for secure and usable systems. Our results suggest that personas increase stakeholder empathy towards users represented by personas, and the empirical data used to build personas can also be used to obtain a better understanding of prospective attackers and their motivations.
Storyboards are used in user-centred design (UCD) to clarify a scenario that describes the future use of a system. Although there are many styles of storyboarding, the graphical notation and language are very accessible for all team members of a multidisciplinary team. This papers describes how principles and techniques from comics can facilitate storyboarding in our COMuICSer approach and tool. COMuICSer formalises the way that storyboards are created, while preserving creative aspects of storyboarding. In combination with tool support for COMuICSer, this simplifies the relation of storyboards with other artefacts created in UCD such as structured models and UI designs and supports communication in multidisciplinary teams.
Coulton, Paul, Lund, Kate and Wilson, Andrew (2010): Harnessing player creativity to broaden the appeal of location based games. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 143-150. Available online
Despite being the subject of considerable research effort location based games in general have failed to attain the popularity and longevity of similar activities such as geo-caching or orienteering. This leads us to the question are the games designed thus far taking too much inspiration in their design from console and pc games leading to games that are too inflexible and failing to support the types of player behaviour that have emerged in geocaching? Using a design inspired by the player engagement evident in geocaching we present the empirical study of the design and user experience from creating the Mobile Augmented Reality (MAR) game Free All Monsters. The results highlight that enabling user creativity and accommodating the varied motivations for playing such games can successfully be incorporated into the design and operation of location based game design and in particular provide a fun outdoor family activity.
Jones, Christian Martyn and Pozzebon, Kay (2010): Being safety smart: social issue game for child protective behaviour training. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 151-159. Available online
Being Safety Smart is an online, social issue game designed to mitigate increasing child abduction rates in Australia. By teaching young children skills and strategies to help protect themselves, the game empowers children with the ability and confidence to act appropriately and decisively. This paper reports on the collaborative research and development of Being Safety Smart, bringing together global best practice in child protection and computer game design to create an educational resource targeted to children aged 6 to 8. The anti-abduction messages and strategies were developed in partnerships with Australian government departments of the Queensland Police Service, the Crime and Misconduct Commission, the Department of Communities (Child Safety Services) and Education Queensland. The gaming environment is aligned to age and gender specific learning capabilities of children and is based on eight key features associated with children's acquisition and retention of protective behaviour concepts and skills. Results of a successful evaluation of the program with schools are presented. Being Safety Smart received the 2009 Queensland Police Service gold award for excellence in crime prevention. and is being used in over 200 schools across Australia.
Sanders, Timothy and Cairns, Paul (2010): Time perception, immersion and music in videogames. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 160-167. Available online
People who play videogames often report the sense of immersion in the game with a particular feature of immersion being a loss of the sense of time passing. In this paper, we investigate if altering the degree of immersion in a videogame really does influence people's psychological perception of time passing. We use music to make a maze game more immersive and we measure time perception using two paradigms that are well-established in psychology. We find that the addition of music does alter time perception but only in one paradigm. Additionally, music was able to influence immersion by both increasing it or decreasing it depending on the choice of music. The overall picture is therefore complex but suggests that music could be an important factor in the perception of time whilst playing videogames.
Acharya, Chitra, Thimbleby, Harold and Oladimeji, Patrick (2010): Human computer interaction and medical devices. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 168-176. Available online
To achieve dependable, usable, and well-engineered interactive devices in healthcare requires applied Human Computer Interaction (HCI) research and awareness of HCI issues throughout the lifecycle, from design through to procurement, training and use. This paper shows that some healthcare devices fall far short, and thus identifies a gap in applied HCI. We use a basic, interactive hospital bed as a case study, arguably so routine and simple enough that there should have been very few problems. However, the bed's interactive control panel design violates standard HCI principles. It is also badly programmed by the manufacturer. Evidently, something has gone wrong, somewhere from design to procurement, and we argue most of the problems would have been managed or avoided by conventional HCI processes. Driven by the case study, this paper explores the problems and makes recommendations. There are many similarly poorly designed medical devices. Manufacturers and healthcare purchasing groups should adhere to HCI processes and guidelines, as well as those provided by regulatory agencies for the design, regulation, and procurement of devices, products, or systems that contribute to patient safety. The challenge is to make HCI knowledge and priorities available to and effective in this important domain in any places that can make a difference.
Stelmaszewska, Hanna, Wong, B. L. William, Bhimani, Nazlin and Barn, Balbir (2010): User behaviour: searching for scholarly material using electronic resource discovery systems. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 17-26. Available online
This paper reports on user behaviour when interacting with various electronic resource discovery systems (ERDS) while searching for scholarly material. It focuses on the search strategies applied by 34 students and researchers in Business and Economics from three UK universities to find relevant information on a specified topic. The findings of the study are presented in relation to existing information-seeking models. Although there are a lot of similarities between existing models we have found some differences between those and our study. These are: the use of personal/social networks to develop keywords for the queries as well as obtaining relevant material, study participants very rarely applied only one search strategy but tended to carry out combined searches which vary depending on the user group, and participants used different means of storing material. We expect these findings to help shape a set of requirements for next generation information discovery provisions in academic libraries.
Doyle, Julie, Skrba, Zoran, McDonnell, Ronan and Arent, Ben (2010): Designing a touch screen communication device to support social interaction amongst older adults. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 177-185. Available online
As people age, social connections can be lost due to a number of factors. Technology can enhance an older person's social connectedness, facilitating the creation of new connections, as well as the maintenance of existing ones. As part of the Building Bridges project, a communication device was deployed in 9 older adult's homes and evaluated over a period of 7-9 weeks. The goals of the study were to assess the usability of the device, to explore attitudes towards it and to gather insights into potential target user groups who may benefit from such technology. We present our findings which highlight the importance of feedback and confirmation in increasing the usability of a technology device for older adults. Emergent themes surrounding older adults' attitudes to using such technology to keep in touch, include the importance of perceived usefulness and the ability to have some level of control over when communication occurs and with whom.
Gibson, Lorna, Arnott, John, Moncur, Wendy, Martin, Christopher, Forbes, Paula and Bhachu, Amritpal S. (2010): Designing social networking sites for older adults. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 186-194. Available online
The importance of older adults' social networks in providing practical, emotional and informational support is well documented. In this paper, we reflect on the personal social networks of older adults, and the shortcomings of existing online Social Networking Sites (SNSs) in supporting their needs. We report findings from ethnographic interviews, focus groups and hands-on demonstrations with older adults, where we find key themes affecting adoption of SNSs. We then consider design aspects that should be taken into account for future SNSs, if they are to meet the preferences of older users.
Day, Phil N., Johnson, Graham I., Rohan, Charlie, Riley, Chris and Carlisle, Maggie (2010): User experience at NCR: an organisational overview. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 195-203. Available online
In this paper the role of user experience (UX) in a large multinational corporation is presented in an historical perspective with recent organisational changes being described that have resulted in the UX role being placed in a central corporate team. Some examples are selected to illustrate a portion of the activities undertaken by this group, and the skills needed to accompany core technical knowledge are outlined. A working definition of user experience is then described that reflects the recent changes that the user experience role has had in our organisation, with this definition being compared with existing definitions of usability. The paper then concludes with reflections on the UX role within a large organisation, and presents some thoughts on how the UX role could be developed in the future. related context upon individual gaze and action during a collaborative Tetris game. Results show that experts as well as novices adapt their playing style when interacting in mixed ability pairs. We also present machine learning results about the prediction of player's social context.
Fierley, Remigius and Engl, Stephan (2010): User experience methods and games: lessons learned. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 204-210. Available online
The increasing expansion of the digital games market has led to a growing need for empirically based, high-quality evaluation of playability and game experience. For practitioners in the field of user experience the question arises, to what extent are their already established methods suitable for the evaluation of games. Based on our experiences with recent projects, we will discuss relevant aspects concerning the application of user experience methods in the games sector. Our purpose is to raise awareness of the particularities in this research field.
Meixner, Gerrit, Petersen, Nils and Koessling, Holger (2010): User interaction evolution in the SmartFactoryKL. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 211-220. Available online
In the SmartFactoryKL the intelligent factory of the future, the consortium of companies and research facilities explores intelligent future technologies. Being a development and demonstration center for industrial applications, the SmartFactoryKL is arbitrarily modifiable and expandable (flexible), connects components from multiple manufacturers (networked), enables its components to perform context-related tasks autonomously (self-organizing), and emphasizes user-friendliness (user-oriented). This paper presents the outcomes of research in different user interaction methodologies for industrial environments. Today, in industrial environments most devices have their own stationary user interface directly attached to the device. Therefore users have to learn many different user interfaces and interaction devices from different vendors. To climb the ladder of evolution regarding interaction in future factories a mobile universal interaction device has been developed that is capable of communicating with various field devices and plant modules of an industrial facility via common wireless communication standards. A mobile Human Computer Interface like that has one user interface for all purposes, is non-proprietary and can be designed individually dependent on its owner's needs and desires. Furthermore a first approach on integrating technologies from Augmented Reality (AR) into industrial facilities recognizing natural interaction through an AR-tablet configuration is presented. Eye-tracking, awareness tools, machine learning, coordination, expertise.
Comai, Sara and Mazza, Davide (2010): Haptic and visual rendering for multi-modal exploration of molecular information. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 221-229. Available online
The paper presents a system for the multi-modal rendering of molecules. Chemists typically deal with phenomena that are not directly experienceable and usually described by huge amount of data awkward to understand directly. Software tools have been introduced to support data interpretation, without a high degree of interactivity and explorability of the data. This work goes beyond the classical visual representations of molecules and introduces some new ways of exploration and navigation of information on which inter-molecular interactions are based. Target users are researchers and teachers, as integration to their activities. Two different modalities are used: haptical and visual. The former modality consists in the addition of a haptic interface that enables users to feel the interaction forces exerted by the electric field around a molecule. The latter modality shows the features of the same electric field by allowing the user to navigate the information about the values of the field using a visual color-based rendering and adding other visual cues. Implementation details, case studies, and results on the two modalities are described.
Fourney, Adam, Terry, Michael and Mann, Richard (2010): Gesturing in the wild: understanding the effects and implications of gesture-based interaction for dynamic presentations. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 230-240. Available online
Driven by the increasing availability of low-cost sensing hardware, gesture-based input is quickly becoming a viable form of interaction for a variety of applications. Electronic presentations (e.g., PowerPoint, Keynote) have long been seen as a natural fit for this form of interaction. However, despite 20 years of prototyping such systems, little is known about how gesture-based input affects presentation dynamics, or how it can be best applied in this context. Instead, past work has focused almost exclusively on recognition algorithms. This paper explicitly addresses these gaps in the literature. Through observations of real-world practices, we first describe the types of gestures presenters naturally make and the purposes these gestures serve when presenting content. We then introduce Maestro, a gesture-based presentation system explicitly designed to support and enhance these existing practices. Finally, we describe the results of a real-world field study in which Maestro was evaluated in a classroom setting for several weeks. Our results indicate that gestures which enable direct interaction with slide content are the most natural fit for this input modality. In contrast, we found that using gestures to navigate slides (the most common implementation in all prior systems) has significant drawbacks. Our results also show how gesture-based input can noticeably alter presentation dynamics, often in ways that are not desirable.
Parekh, Manish and Baber, Christopher (2010): Tool use as gesture: new challenges for maintenance and rehabilitation. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 241-249. Available online
There are many ways to capture human gestures. In this paper, consideration is given to an extension to the growing trend to use sensors to capture movements and interpret these as gestures. However, rather than have sensors on people, the focus is on the attachment of sensors (i.e., strain gauges and accelerometers) to the tools that people use. By instrumenting a set of handles, which can be fitted with a variety of effectors (e.g., knives, forks, spoons, screwdrivers, spanners, saws etc.), it is possible to capture the variation in grip force applied to the handle as the tool is used and the movements made using the handle. These data can be sent wirelessly (using Zigbee) to a computer where distinct patterns of movement can be classified. Different approaches to the classification of activity are considered. This provides an approach to combining the use of real tools in physical space with the representation of actions on a computer. This approach could be used to capture actions during manual tasks, say in maintenance work, or to support development of movements, say in rehabilitation.
Abad, Marina, Díaz, Itxaso and Vigo, Markel (2010): Acceptance of mobile technology in hedonic scenarios. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 250-258. Available online
This paper presents a novel acceptance model for scenarios in which people make use of mobile devices for leisure purposes. The use of mobile devices has such a dominant leisure component that user attitudes towards mobile adoption are strongly determined. Since hedonic aspects play a key role in mobile adoption, they are introduced through the constructs in the proposed Technology Acceptance Model (TAM). To validate the TAM, 79 teenagers took part in an outdoor event that aimed to foster creativity through the use of a mobile phone. Different features of the mobile phone were used by the teenagers to conduct interviews, communicate with peers, and orient themselves using the GPS, among other applications. The proposed TAM yielded successful results since a Principal Components Analysis (PCA) revealed that the constructs Perceived Usefulness, Perceived Ease of Use and Perceived Enjoyment determined
Leino, Juha, Finnberg, Sanna and Räihä, Kari-Jouko (2010): The times they are a-changin': mobile PIM is leaving the paper trail behind. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 259-268. Available online
Use practices in personal information management (PIM) evolve continually. The data from our two studies, a survey study (n=61) on to-do use practices and a diary/interview study (n=11) on smartphone use in PIM, suggests that electronic PIM has finally reached paper-based PIM in popularity. Mobile phones and their development have been integral to this development: Better input possibilities and better screens together with improved Internet accessibility have made it possible for us to increasingly organize our lives with mobiles. Thus, mobiles have to be in the epicenter when designing the PIM applications of tomorrow.
Peng, En, Peursum, Patrick, Li, Ling and Venkatesh, Svetha (2010): Portable form filling assistant for the visually impaired. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 269-277. Available online
The filling of printed forms has always been an issue for the visually impaired. Though optical character recognition technology has helped many blind people to 'read' the world, there is not a single device that allows them to fill out a paper-based form without a human assistant. The task of filling forms is however an essential part of their daily lives, for example, for access to social security or benefits. This paper describes a solution that allows a blind person to complete paper-based forms, pervasively and independently, using only off-the-shelf equipment including a Smartphone, a clipboard with sliding ruler, and a ballpoint pen. A dynamic color fiduciary (point of reference) marker is designed so that it can be moved by the user to any part of the form such that all regions can be "visited". This dynamic color fiduciary marker is robust to camera focus and partial occlusion, allowing flexibility in handling the Smartphone with embedded camera. Feedback is given to the blind user via both voice and tone to facilitate efficient guidance in filling out the form. Experimental results have shown that this prototype can help visually impaired people to fill out a form independently.
Daniel, Pedro Teixeira and Fonseca, Gonçalves Manuel J. (2010): Interactive file searching using file metadata and visualization. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 27-35. Available online
Navigation and browsing on a computer system are usually done using the file system hierarchy. However, this is not the most adequate method to search or locate a given file at a later time, unless we know exactly where it is. In this paper, we present a new approach for interactive file searching, which takes advantage of the (implicit) metadata associated to files. With this information we specify a semantic hierarchy that is both used for browsing and filtering the found files. We combine this with an interactive histogram, for overviewing and filtering according to specific metadata, and a dynamic view mechanism, which selects the most appropriate representation for the type of file being presented. Experimental tests with users revealed that they can find files faster than with a conventional browser or searching tool and that the semantic hierarchy and filtering mechanism were well understood by users.
Carmichael, Alex, Rice, Mark, MacMillan, Freya and Kirk, Alison (2010): Investigating a DTV-based physical activity application to facilitate wellbeing in older adults. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 278-288. Available online
This paper describes a study that examined the usability and acceptability of a physical exercise application using the digital television platform for older adults. A key aim of this study was to obtain feedback from representative older users to inform further development of this application. Other key outcomes were to measure physical exertion objectively and subjectively whilst using this application and to investigate potential acute effects of the session on cognitive function and mood. The results indicated that the settings used for the current exercises did not produce physical exertion at a high enough intensity to have significant health benefits, although a positive impact on mood was found. Subjective feedback identified a number of issues regarding various application features and possible adaptations for the future design and development of this application, including the use of gesture based user-control and the potential importance of monitoring user heart-rate to set exercise parameters.
Fischer, Patrick Tobias, Zöllner, Christian and Hornecker, Eva (2010): VR/Urban: Spread.gun -- design process and challenges in developing a shared encounter for media façades. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 289-298. Available online
Designing novel interaction concepts for urban environments is not only a technical challenge in terms of scale, safety, portability and deployment, but also a challenge of designing for social configurations and spatial settings. To outline what it takes to create a consistent and interactive experience in urban space, we describe the concept and multidisciplinary design process of VR/Urban's media intervention tool called Spread.gun, which was created for the Media Façade Festival 2008 in Berlin. Main design aims were the anticipation of urban space, situational system configuration and embodied interaction. This case study also reflects on the specific technical, organizational and infrastructural challenges encountered when developing media façade installations.
Sheridan, Jennifer G. (2010): When clapping data speaks to Wii: physical creativity and performative interaction in playground games and songs. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 299-308. Available online
In this paper, we explore how exertion interfaces can promote physical creativity and the role that this might play in performative interaction. In particular, we are interested in exploring how to design and develop devices and applications which use physical interaction, or exertion, to promote performative interaction or the witting transitions between observing, participating and performing. Using the Nintendo Wii as an exertion interface, we are updating, analysing and representing a small selection of clapping games found in the Opie Collection of Children's Games and Songs in the British Library and emerging from ethnographic studies of playgrounds in London and Sheffield, UK. We describe the Physics of clapping and associated technical issues, the design of a low-fi, open source exertion interface and the analysis of a participant study. We suggest guidelines for designing for physical creativity, namely kinesthetic literacy, performative interaction and believability, and conclude with a discussion of future considerations.
Dicke, Christina, Aaltonen, Viljakaisa, Rämö, Anssi and Vilermo, Miikka (2010): Talk to me: the influence of audio quality on the perception of social presence. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 309-318. Available online
In this paper, we compare the impact of monophonic, stereophonic, and binaural human speech recordings in terms of their ability to induce the feeling of presence and influence the understanding of the emotional state the speakers were in. These factors are generally important in entertainment applications, for example when conversing with a non-player character or in mediated synchronous human-to-human communication. Our results show a significant advantage of binaural over mono and stereo sound for inducing the sense of being present in an (virtual) environment. Furthermore, we found that listening to a stereophonic recording of a conversation leads to a significantly stronger understanding of the emotional state of speakers than listening to a mono or binaural recording.
Ende, Nele Van den, Hoonhout, Jettie and Meesters, Lydia (2010): Measuring involvement with audio/video content. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 319-327. Available online
The authors believe that involvement is one of the key cognitive mediating factors between content and viewing experience. A questionnaire to measure involvement with audio/video content was developed. Results showed that 25 questions are probably sufficient to cover the aspects of the construct.. Creating a valid and reliable questionnaire is not an easy process, but the process established in this paper can hopefully contribute to the creation of well-defined constructs, and valid and reliable measurements for these constructs.
Wilkinson, Christopher, Langdon, Pat and Clarkson, John (2010): Observing learning and conceptual development through novel product interaction. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 328-336. Available online
Improving product usability through inclusive design consideration can enhance a products potential commercial success, whilst widening it's acceptability across an increasingly divergent market. An experimental approach was developed to encapsulate how individuals perceive, process and respond to stimuli during interaction with products. By presenting a sample of participants with a novel product, we are able to assess how their understanding and internal conceptualisations are developed during increasing product exposure, and indicate how product design can have a significant impact upon these processes. Participants were recorded interacting with the novel product whilst providing concurrent protocol and information elicited regarding the development of internal representations. The extent of participants' technological familiarity was also investigated to determine how prior experience may assist novel product interaction. Age related differences were evident in both approaches to problem solving and extent of technological familiarity, and this was considered to have an impact upon overall interactional performance.
Ataullah, Ahmed A. and Lank, Edward (2010): Googling Bing: reassessing the impact of brand on the perceived quality of two contemporary search engines. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 337-345. Available online
Given the high value of the online search market, whether brand perception or quality of search results matters more for users is a highly salient question. This paper presents findings of the largest controlled, systematic preference elicitation study of search quality versus brand perception. We examine a total of 548 instances of sponsored and organic search results from the Google and Bing search engines as rated by 25 participants. We find that, if users are not aware of the source of a set of search results, they will consistently rate Google results as better. However, the presence of the Google brand strongly influences perceived quality, essentially over-riding differences in search result quality. Together, these results demonstrate that, while Google may outperform Bing in blind searching, trust in the Google brand is a much more significant factor in users' search preferences.
Robertson, Paul, Szymkowiak, Andrea and Johnson, Graham (2010): Investigating the future of self-service technology. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 346-349. Available online
In this paper we describe an ongoing research project between NCR Dundee and Abertay University to investigate the future of self-service technology for entertainment. The aim was to assess how future technologies may be utilized in building a new system or improving current approaches to content distribution. We designed a web-based survey to determine the likelihood with which users would interact with future services. The findings suggested a strong preference for internet based technologies and the implications for further usage technologies are discussed.
Financial planning and decision making for the general public continues to vex and perplex in equal measure. Whilst the tools presented by a typical desktop computer should make the task easier, the recent financial crisis confirms the increasing difficulty that people have in calculating the benefits of deferring consumption for future gains (i.e. Saving). We present an interactive concept demonstration for Microsoft Surface TM that tackles two of the key barriers to saving decision making. Firstly we show an interface that avoid the laborious writing down or inputting of data and instead embodies the cognitive decision of allocation of resources in a physical gesture based interface, where the scale of the investment or expenditure correlates with the scale of the gesture. Second we show how a fast-forward based animation can demonstrate the impact of small increments in savings to a long term savings goal in a strategy game-based, interactive format. The platform uses custom software (XNATM format) as opposed to the more usual WPFTM format found on Surface applications. This enables dynamic 3-D graphical icons to be used to maximize the interactive appeal of the interface. Demonstration and test trial feedback indicates that this platform can be adapted to suit the narrative of individual purchasing decisions to inform educate diverse user groups about the long term consequences of small financial decisions.
Bial, Dominik, Block, Florian and Gellersen, Hans-Werner (2010): A study of two-handed scrolling and selection on standard notebook computers. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 355-364. Available online
Although two-handed input can improve both efficiency and quality of user interaction, it is not commonly adopted as it requires additional input devices. In this paper we propose two-handed interaction on standard hardware -- notebooks with external mouse -- and for a common task -- 2D scrolling. We introduce four techniques that leverage the built-in touchpad as a dedicated scrolling device for the non-dominant hand, for scenarios in which the mouse is used in parallel for object selection and manipulation tasks. The techniques implement relative scrolling, flicking, absolute positioning and token-based input on the touchpad. We present an empirical evaluation of these techniques in a task that simulates activities such as retouching of photos, or interaction with maps, in which users often switch between mouse interaction and scrolling. The results show initially best performance with relative scrolling as a familiar mapping, but strong learning effects for all techniques. Users had difficulty with absolute mapping of touchpad input due to a tendency to clutching and finger repositioning, but we observed that these problems are compensated when a token is used as absolute input device.
Jermann, Patrick, Nüssli, Marc-Antoine and Li, Weifeng (2010): Using dual eye-tracking to unveil coordination and expertise in collaborative Tetris. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 36-44. Available online
The use of dual eye-tracking is investigated in a collaborative game setting. The automatic collection of information about partner's gaze will eventually serve to build adaptive interfaces. Following this agenda, and in order to identify stable gaze patterns, we investigate the impact of social and task related context upon individual gaze and action during a collaborative Tetris game. Results show that experts as well as novices adapt their playing style when interacting in mixed ability pairs. We also present machine learning results about the prediction of player's social context.
Dehmeshki, Hoda and Stuerzlinger, Wolfgang (2010): Design and evaluation of a perceptual-based object group selection technique. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 365-373. Available online
Selecting groups of objects is a frequent task in graphical user interfaces since it precedes all manipulation operations. Current selection techniques such as lasso become time-consuming and error-prone in dense configurations or when the area covered by targets is large or hard to reach. Perceptual-based selection techniques can considerably improve the selection task when the targets have a perceptual structure, driven by Gestalt principles of proximity and good continuity. However, current techniques use ad hoc grouping algorithms that often lack evidence from perception science. Moreover, they do not allow selecting arbitrary groups (i.e. without a perceptual structure) or modifying a selection. This paper presents a domain-independent perceptual-based selection technique that addresses these issues. It is built upon an established group detection model from perception research and provides intuitive interaction techniques for selecting (whole or partial) groups with curvilinear or random structures. Our user study shows that this technique not only outperforms rectangle selection and lasso techniques when targets have perceptual structure, but also it is competitive when targets have arbitrary arrangements.
Ispas, Adriana, Signer, Beat and Norrie, Moira C. (2010): A study of incidental notetaking to inform digital pen and paper solutions. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 374-383. Available online
With the aid of digital pen and paper technologies, information written on paper can be made available digitally without an intermediary transcription step. This creates opportunities to harness paper notes in ways that are only possible with digital systems. We report on the outcomes of a user study on incidental paper-based notetaking that examined, not only the forms of notes that users take, but also if and how these are later used. Our aim was to establish how useful existing digital pen and paper solutions would be in such settings as well as informing the design of new solutions.
Day, Phil N., Colville, Jim and Rohan, Charlie (2010): An evaluation of sunlight-viewable displays. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 384-392. Available online
This paper reports the results of a study comprising of four evaluations of sunlight viewable displays. These evaluations consisted of 16 and 20 participants, with two additional expert reviews. A comparison is made between two different types of display technology, namely, transflective and high-bright backlit displays, and results are presented of this comparison. Secondary comparisons of different approaches for managing glare and reflections are also presented and discussed. Transflective displays were found to be at least as good as high-bright alternatives and are therefore promoted as a viable technology for daylight-viewable displays to be placed in an exterior environment.
Fitchett, Stephen and Cockburn, Andy (2010): MultiScroll: using multitouch input to disambiguate relative and absolute mobile scroll modes. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 393-402. Available online
We propose MultiScroll, a general purpose hybrid scrolling technique that uses multitouch input to allow for a combination of rate based scrolling for navigating short and medium distances and zero-order scrolling for navigating large distances. The design challenges of supporting both scrolling modes on mobile devices are discussed, including the use of 'drift zones' and 'edge proximity warnings' to resolve potential problems of touch controlled mobile rate-based scrolling. Evaluations with participants both stationary and walking show the complimentary benefits of the techniques over flick scrolling across a variety of scrolling tasks.
Miró-Borrás, Julio, Bernabeu-Soler, Pablo, Llinares, Raul and Igual, Jorge (2010): Evaluation of an ambiguous-keyboard prototype scanning-system with word and character disambiguation. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 403-411. Available online
Ambiguous keyboards are common in small-size devices such as mobile phones, but they can be applied to other fields such as Augmentative and Alternative Communications, and specifically addressed to people with severe motor disabilities. This research proposes a novel alternative to assign letters to keys, where letters with similar graphical characteristics are grouped into the same key, leading to families of four, three and two-key simple and easy-to-learn layouts. All layouts have been analyzed for a scanning system that implements a word and a character disambiguation algorithm using only one switch as input device. With the best three-key layout, the text entry speeds predicted were 16.7 wpm using word disambiguation and 10.8 wpm for character disambiguation, with a 0.5 seconds scan period. In an experiment conducted with 6 participants and dynamic scan period, average entry speeds reached 12.2 and 6.3 wpm respectively. The top speeds reached by single participants were 16.9 and 8.3 wpm.
Brewster, Stephen and Constantin, Aurora (2010): Tactile feedback for ambient awareness in mobile interactions. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 412-417. Available online
The study of tactile feedback has attracted increasing interest in HCI over recent years. Similar to icons, tactile messages, or Tactons, can encode and transmit information through the touch sense . We report an experiment to investigate if we can present contextual information to a user in a low attention, ambient manner. In this case, it is done by changing the tactile 'feel' of buttons on a touchscreen keyboard to indicate external events, for example when a friend is close by. Very short Tactons (<=300ms) on each key press were changed in roughness and rhythm to indicate the events. Results showed that users correctly identified the Tactons for the different events with a rate of 88% when 180 Tactons were presented in 45 minutes, and 98% when the Tactons were presented in a more realistic manner. This shows that changing tactile feedback can be an effective method of presenting ambient information on a mobile device.
Crossan, Andrew, Brewster, Stephen and Ng, Alexander (2010): Foot tapping for mobile interaction. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 418-422. Available online
In this paper we present an initial investigation of foot tapping as a mechanism for interacting with a mobile device without removing it from a pocket. We compare a foot tapping technique for menu interaction with two more traditional situations: one where the user has the phone in hand, and one where the user must remove it from an inside pocket before interacting. Results show that over the course of the full study, all conditions allowed a high level of accuracy in selections. The visual and in pocket conditions were overall faster and more accurate. However, for short selections requiring four or less foot taps or button presses the foot tap condition was faster than the in pocket condition.
Huber, Jochen, Steimle, Jürgen, Lissermann, Roman, Olberding, Simon and Mühlhäuser, Max (2010): Wipe'n'Watch: spatial interaction techniques for interrelated video collections on mobile devices. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 423-427. Available online
With the advent of increasingly powerful mobile devices like Apple's iPhone, videos can be used virtually anywhere and anytime. However, state of the art mobile video browsers do not efficiently support users in browsing within individual, semantically segmented videos and between the large amounts of related videos, e.g. available on the Web. We contribute Wipe'n'Watch, a novel user interface for the mobile navigation of large video collections comprising two spatial interaction techniques for the mobile, nonlinear interaction with multiple videos. Evaluation results show that our solution leads to significantly higher efficiency and user satisfaction.
An important activity in urban three-dimensional (3D) mobile navigation is browsing the buildings in the environment and matching them to those in the 3D city map. There are different factors affecting the recognition process such as changes in the appearances of buildings, weather, and illumination conditions. The current aim was to study the salience of different types of visual cues in the recognition of buildings in 3D maps in suboptimal conditions. A pilot laboratory experiment was conducted, in which test participants recognized buildings in a 3D city map using systematically prepared photographs as stimuli, and their cognitive processes were studied using the think aloud protocol. The results suggested that buildings in a 3D city map can be recognized based on a variety of different visual cues ranging from small details such as textual signs to the shape of the building and landmark features such as towers. The results also suggested that buildings are recognized relatively much based on their location and other buildings and objects in their surroundings.
Kodagoda, Neesha, Wong, B. L. William and Khan, Nawaz (2010): Open-card sort to explain why low-literate users abandon their web searches early. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 433-442. Available online
The purpose of this paper is to report the possible reasons for premature abandonment by low-literate users during online searches. Previous evidence suggests that low-literate web users abandon their online searches early believing that the information they were looking for should be in the section they were at, thinking that they have either found it or that the information was unavailable. This paper describes an open-card sorting technique combined with multiple Cognitive Task Analysis (CTA) methods to understand why this occurs. Nine high-literate and eight low-literate volunteers of the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) sorted 37 cards representing information in the "Adviceguide" social services website. The qualitative data collected were analysed using Emergent Themes Analysis (ETA). Results showed that low-literate users do not create main and subgroups when classifying the cards but kept them on single-level taxonomy. They rank these groups based on flawed interpretations of concepts and personal or hypothetical experiences. High-literate users create multi-level taxonomies and their interpretations are based on keywords and interpretations of concepts and personal or hypothetical experiences. We believe these differences in classification models may contribute to premature abandonment of online searches by low-literate users.
Leitner, Michael, Wöckl, Bernhard, Subasi, Özge and Tschelgi, Manfred (2010): Towards the use of "negative effects" in technology design and evaluation. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 443-447. Available online
Negative effects of computer use are reported in different studies; but so far no standardized framework exists to work with these issues throughout a user-centred design process. "Negative effects" are the result of user, context and task characteristics and they diminish the performance, the perceived ease of use or even prevent people from using technology. In this paper we discuss different aspects and ideas in order to debate "negative effects" as origin of design and as evaluation criteria. The high-level goal of this approach is to avoid negative effects by design. This paper describes a number of basic thoughts and considerations to describe the idea of how and why "negative effects" should be considered throughout the design process.
Rolfe, Ben, Jones, Christian Martyn and Wallace, Helen (2010): Designing dramatic play: story and game structure. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 448-452. Available online
Drama in games is created by the interplay of the narrative structure of story and the ludic structure of challenges. In this paper, we combine Csikszentmihalyi's model of engagement and flow with Freytag's pyramid, a model of narrative structure. Using this combination, we explore the dramatic structure of Halo: Combat Evolved, comparing ludic and narrative structures at each stage of the game. Based on our analysis, we recommend that game designers recognise the importance of psychological states beyond flow, and structure gameplay to lead the player on a journey through different states. In particular, we defend the idea of pushing the player out of their comfort zone early in the game to provide motivation and positive stress, and ending the game with challenges below the player's level of expertise, to allow them to relax, reflect, and experience a sense of closure.
Olsen, Anneli, Smolentzov, Linnea and Strandvall, Tommy (2010): Comparing different eye tracking cues when using the retrospective think aloud method in usability testing. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 45-53. Available online
Research has shown that incorporating eye tracking in usability research can provide certain benefits compared with traditional usability testing. There are various methodologies available when conducting research using eye trackers. This paper presents the results of a study aimed to compare the outcomes from four different retrospective think aloud (RTA) methods in a web usability study: an un-cued RTA, a video cued RTA, a gaze plot cued RTA, and a gaze video cued RTA. Results indicate that using any kind of cue produces more words, comments and allows participants to identify more usability issues compared with not using any cues at all. The findings also suggest that using a gaze plot or gaze video cue stimulates participants to produce the highest number of words and comments, and mention more usability problems.
In this project, a design for a non-invasive, EEG-based braincontrolled wheelchair has been developed for use by completely paralyzed patients. The proposed design includes a novel approach for selecting optimal electrode positions, a series of signal processing algorithms and an interface to a powered wheelchair. In addition, a 3D virtual environment has been implemented for training, evaluating and testing the system prior to establishing the wheelchair interface. Simulation of a virtual scenario replicating the real world gives subjects an opportunity to become familiar with operating the device prior to engaging the wheelchair.
Byrne, Jake Rowan and Tangney, Brendan (2010): CAWriter: a CSCW/CSCL tool to support research students' academic writing. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 458-462. Available online
Within the larger framework of a research project aiming to develop CSCW/CSCL tools, to scaffold a cognitive apprenticeship model as applied to doctoral education, academic writing has been identified as a key process to be supported. By following a participatory design approach, and by building upon previous writing tools, a prototype is being developed to assist Computer Science research students in the academic writing process. Key features of the tool are that it supports non-linear document creation and multiple representations of notes and document content. Initial feedback from use of the tool and planned future work to integrate collaboration to support cognitive apprenticeship are reported.
Camara, Souleymane, Shrestha, Sujan, Abdelnour-Nocera, José and Moore, John (2010): Village eLearning: an offline mobile solution to rural communities? knowledge requirement. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 463-467. Available online
This paper presents an offline mobile eLearning concept as an ICT solution to address the knowledge requirements of a rural sub-Saharan farming community. A socio-technical customisation and deployment of WikiReaders is proposed to support offline mobile access to digital content. A future use scenario is presented as a demonstration of cheap but sustainable innovation emerging from a longitudinal evaluation of users, their needs and their context.
Coughlan, Tim, Adams, Anne and Rogers, Yvonne (2010): Designing for balance: Out There and In Here. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 468-473. Available online
This paper describes the 'Out There and In Here' project, in which we explore the combined use of mobile technologies and static indoor technologies to support novel forms of collaborative field trip learning. We are currently developing a system to support balanced collaboration between geology students 'Out There' in the field, and their peers located in a specially designed 'In Here' laboratory. Here we explain the background to the project, and describe data collected on perceptions of field learning in geology that is directing design. In particular, we discuss bringing the 'Out There' experience 'In Here', whilst also enhancing the field experience. This requires the concurrent development of technologies and activities, and balancing the control required for effective learning with scope for user creativity.
Lochrie, Mark, Lund, Kate and Coulton, Paul (2010): Community generated location based gaming. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 474-478. Available online
This paper presents the concept for community driven Location Based Games (LBG) that involve actively exploring and discovering public spaces similar to the characteristics seen in Geocaching. The game demonstrated in this paper attempts to utilise the motivations and overcome the limitations of existing Location Based Games.
Hoadley, Richard (2010): Form and function: examples of music interface design. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 479-483. Available online
This paper presents observations on the creation of digital music controllers and the music that they generate from the perspectives of the designer and the artist. In the case of musical instruments, what is the role of the form (the hardware) where it concerns the function (the production of musically interesting sounds)? Specific projects are presented, and a set of operational principles is supported from those examples. The associated encounter session will allow delegates to experiment with the interfaces exhibited, further informing these principles.
Ruiz, Natalie, Liu, Guang, Yin, Bo, Farrow, Damian and Chen, Fang (2010): Teaching athletes cognitive skills: detecting cognitive load in speech input. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 484-488. Available online
As part of their preparation, athletes are often required to complete cognitive skills training using targeted sports-specific software applications. When cognitive load is very high, the quality of performance can be negatively affected and learning can be inhibited. The aim of this study is to verify whether cognitive load can be inferred directly from speech signal changes collected using one such training application. We expect that the quality of the communicative signals during interaction will change as cognitive load increases. Twelve recreational basketball players completed training requiring them to recall aloud the positions of increasing numbers of team players, and draw symbols to represent those players onto a court schematic on a digital surface. This paper focuses on the analysis of the speech data only, testing whether the speech signal changes due to high cognitive load. We describe the techniques used to build the speech load models and present the classification results. Using only automated speech signal analysis, we can identify
Sim, Gavin and Read, Janet C. (2010): The Damage Index: an aggregation tool for usability problem prioritisation. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 54-61. Available online
The aggregation of usability problems is an integral part of a usability evaluation. Numerous problems can be revealed and given that there are usually limited resources for fixing or redesigning the system then prioritisation of the problem set is essential. This paper examines the prioritisation of usability problems from a single heuristic evaluation and multiple heuristic evaluations of Questionmark Perception, a computer assisted assessment application widely used within educational institutions. Two different methods for prioritisation are critiqued; one based on the severity ratings alone and the other on a Damage Index formula proposed by the authors. The results highlight the difference in ranking of problems dependent upon the approach taken. The Damage Index offers a method of systematically prioritising the usability problems in a repeatable way, removing subjectivity from this process, therefore offering improvements over just the reliance upon the severity ratings alone.
Dadgari, Darius and Stuerzlinger, Wolfgang (2010): Novel user interfaces for diagram versioning and differencing. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 62-71. Available online
Easily available software for diagram creation does not support the comparison of different versions and the merging of such versions. We present new methods and techniques for easy versioning of general two-dimensional diagrams. Multiple novel versioning methods for diagram versioning are compared to each other as well as to previous work in a user study. Participants in a user study preferred the Translucency View and Master Diagram Scenario to the other investigated methods and scenarios.
Luz, Saturnino and Masoodian, Masood (2010): Improving focus and context awareness in interactive visualization of time lines. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 72-80. Available online
This paper presents an analysis and empirical evaluation of techniques developed to support focus and context awareness in tasks involving visualization of time lines. It focuses on time lines that display discrete events and their temporal relationships. The most common form of representation for such time lines is the Gantt chart. Although ubiquitous in event visualization and project planning applications, Gantt charts are inherently space-consuming, and suffer from shortcomings in providing focus and context awareness when a large number of tasks and events needs to be displayed. In an attempt to address this problem, we implemented and adapted a number of focus and context awareness techniques for an interactive task scheduling system in combination with the standard Gantt chart and an alternative space-filling mosaic approach to time line visualization. A controlled user trial compared user performance at interpreting representations of hierarchical task scheduling, assessing different methods across various conditions resulting from interactive explorations of the Gantt and the mosaic interfaces. Results suggested a number of possible improvements to these interactive visualization techniques. The implementation of some of these improvements is also presented and discussed.
Salimun, Carolyn, Purchase, Helen C., Simmons, David R. and Brewster, Stephen (2010): Preference ranking of screen layout principles. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 81-87. Available online
This paper presents the results of a study on the preference ranking of six layout principles (Cohesion, Economy, Regularity, Sequence, Symmetry, and Unity). Preference judgments were conducted using a forced-choice paired comparisons method. The findings of the present study indicate that, contrary to suggestions in previous literature, an interface was most preferred when it found that the layout principles of Symmetry and Cohesion were more influential than the other layout principles. Further research is needed to identify other aesthetics factors which might influence preferences, and establish appropriate design guidelines.
Brostoff, Sacha, Inglesant, Philip and Sasse, M. Angela (2010): Evaluating the usability and security of a graphical one-time PIN system. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 88-97. Available online
Traditional Personal Identification Numbers (PINs) are widely used, but the attacks in which they are captured have been increasing. One-time PINs offer better security, but potentially create greater workload for users. In this paper, we present an independent evaluation of a commercial system that makes PINs more resistant to observation attacks by using graphical passwords on a grid to generate a one-time PIN. 83 participants were asked to register with the system and log in at varying intervals. The successful login rate was approximately 91% after 3-4 days, and 97% after 9-10 days. Twenty five participants were retested after two years, and 27% of those were able to recall their pattern. We recorded 17 instances of failed attempts, and found that even though participants recalled the general shape of the pass-pattern in 13 of these instances, they could not recall its detailed location or sequence of cells. We conclude that GrIDsure is usable if people have one pass-pattern, but the level of security will depend on the context of use (it will work best in scenarios where repeated observations of transactions are unlikely), and the instructions given to users (without guidance, they are likely to chose from a small subset of the possible patterns which are easily guessed).
Renaud, Karen and Just, Mike (2010): Pictures or questions?: examining user responses to association-based authentication. In: Proceedings of the HCI10 Conference on People and Computers XXIV 2010. pp. 98-107. Available online
Challenge questions are commonly used as a backup should users forget their "main" authentication secret. Such questions are notoriously difficult to design properly, and have sometimes allowed intruders to access the system via a back door simply by engaging in some online research about the victim . Most challenge questions rely on a user's knowledge of their early life, something which tends not to deteriorate over time . Unfortunately, this kind of information can also be discovered by a determined attacker. We developed a challenge protocol in which a set of pictorial cues are used to prompt answers, rather than using the standard mechanism based on textual questions. The prompts solicit associative memories that need not represent factual information (information that aids an attacker in mounting targeted observation attacks) and serve as a stronger cue to aid the recall. Our results reveal that the solution has comparable security with that of traditional challenge questions (when considering external attackers), and suggests additional benefits from posing three or more questions serially. Furthermore, we obtained a 13% increase in the memorability of our (name-based) answers, while our results suggest enhancements could help improve the recall of place-based answers. We conclude by discussing how further modifications could achieve gains on the usability front.