Human Computer Interaction (HCI) User Experience (UX) topic overview/definition


Human Computer Interaction (HCI): Concept Definition

Human Computer Interaction (HCI) is a field of study focused on the design of computer technology, and in particular the interaction between humans (the users) and computers. It encompasses multiple disciplines, such as computer science, cognitive science, and human factors engineering. While initially focused on computers, HCI has since expanded to almost all forms of information technology design.

HCI emerged in the 1980s, and is crucial for popularizing the idea that the interaction between a computer and the user should resemble a human-to-human, open-ended dialogue. It is initially focused on using knowledge in cognitive and computer sciences to improve the usability of computers (how easy computers are to learn and use), but has since then steadily encompassed more fields (such as information visualization, social computing, etc.).

In many ways, HCI pre-dates and has grown to become what we now call “User Experience (UX) Design”, although there are still some differences between HCI and UX design. Practitioners of HCI tend to be more academically-focused, and are involved in scientific research and developing empirical understanding of users. UX designers, on the other hand, tend to be industry-focused, and most UX designers are involved with building a product or service, like a smartphone app or website.

For your convenience, we’ve collected all UX literature that deals with Human Computer Interaction (HCI). Here’s the full list: