Publication statistics

Pub. period:2003-2012
Pub. count:18
Number of co-authors:36


Number of publications with 3 favourite co-authors:

Peter Kamb:
Joshua Rakita:
Jacob O. Wobbrock:



Productive colleagues

Leah Findlater's 3 most productive colleagues in number of publications:

Ravin Balakrishnan:108
James A. Landay:91
Andrew Sears:90

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Leah Findlater


Publications by Leah Findlater (bibliography)

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Gajos, Krzysztof Z., Hurst, Amy and Findlater, Leah (2012): Personalized dynamic accessibility. In Interactions, 19 (2) pp. 69-73.

In this forum we celebrate research that helps to successfully bring the benefits of computing technologies to children, older adults, people with disabilities, and other populations that are often ignored in the design of mass-marketed products.

© All rights reserved Gajos et al. and/or Lawrence Erlbaum Associates

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Wobbrock, Jacob O., Findlater, Leah, Gergle, Darren and Higgins, James J. (2011): The aligned rank transform for nonparametric factorial analyses using only anova procedures. In: Proceedings of ACM CHI 2011 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2011. pp. 143-146.

Nonparametric data from multi-factor experiments arise often in human-computer interaction (HCI). Examples may include error counts, Likert responses, and preference tallies. But because multiple factors are involved, common nonparametric tests (e.g., Friedman) are inadequate, as they are unable to examine interaction effects. While some statistical techniques exist to handle such data, these techniques are not widely available and are complex. To address these concerns, we present the Aligned Rank Transform (ART) for nonparametric factorial data analysis in HCI. The ART relies on a preprocessing step that "aligns" data before applying averaged ranks, after which point common ANOVA procedures can be used, making the ART accessible to anyone familiar with the F-test. Unlike most articles on the ART, which only address two factors, we generalize the ART to N factors. We also provide ARTool and ARTweb, desktop and Web-based programs for aligning and ranking data. Our re-examination of some published HCI results exhibits advantages of the ART.

© All rights reserved Wobbrock et al. and/or their publisher

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Findlater, Leah, Wobbrock, Jacob O. and Wigdor, Daniel (2011): Typing on flat glass: examining ten-finger expert typing patterns on touch surfaces. In: Proceedings of ACM CHI 2011 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2011. pp. 2453-2462.

Touch screen surfaces large enough for ten-finger input have become increasingly popular, yet typing on touch screens pales in comparison to physical keyboards. We examine typing patterns that emerge when expert users of physical keyboards touch-type on a flat surface. Our aim is to inform future designs of touch screen keyboards, with the ultimate goal of supporting touch-typing with limited tactile feedback. To study the issues inherent to flat-glass typing, we asked 20 expert typists to enter text under three conditions: (1) with no visual keyboard and no feedback on input errors, then (2) with and (3) without a visual keyboard, but with some feedback. We analyzed touch contact points and hand contours, looking at attributes such as natural finger positioning, the spread of hits among individual keys, and the pattern of non-finger touches. We also show that expert typists exhibit spatially consistent key press distributions within an individual, which provides evidence that eyes-free touch-typing may be possible on touch surfaces and points to the role of personalization in such a solution. We conclude with implications for design.

© All rights reserved Findlater et al. and/or their publisher

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Hurst, Amy, Gajos, Krzysztof, Findlater, Leah, Wobbrock, Jacob, Sears, Andrew and Trewin, Shari (2011): Dynamic accessibility: accommodating differences in ability and situation. In: Proceedings of ACM CHI 2011 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2011. pp. 41-44.

Human abilities and situations are idiosyncratic and may change frequently. Static one-size-fits-many accessibility solutions miss the opportunities that arise from careful consideration of an individual's abilities and fail to address the sometimes dynamic aspect of those abilities, such as when a user's activity or context causes a "situational impairment." The goal of this workshop is to bring together researchers and practitioners in accessibility, mobile HCI, and interactive intelligent systems who are pursuing agile, data-driven approaches that enable interactive systems to adapt or become adapted to the needs and abilities of a particular individual in a particular context.

© All rights reserved Hurst et al. and/or their publisher

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Jansen, Alex, Findlater, Leah and Wobbrock, Jacob O. (2011): From the lab to the world: lessons from extending a pointing technique for real-world use. In: Proceedings of ACM CHI 2011 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2011. pp. 1867-1872.

We present the Pointing Magnifier as a case study for understanding the issues and challenges of deploying lab-validated pointing facilitation techniques into the real world. The Pointing Magnifier works by magnifying the contents of an area cursor to allow for selection in a magnified visual and motor space. The technique has been shown in prior lab studies to be effective at reducing the need for fine pointing for motor-impaired users. We highlight key design and technical challenges in bringing the technique, and such techniques in general, from the lab to the field.

© All rights reserved Jansen et al. and/or their publisher

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Froehlich, Jon, Findlater, Leah and Landay, James A. (2010): The design of eco-feedback technology. In: Proceedings of ACM CHI 2010 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2010. pp. 1999-2008.

Eco-feedback technology provides feedback on individual or group behaviors with a goal of reducing environmental impact. The history of eco-feedback extends back more than 40 years to the origins of environmental psychology. Despite its stated purpose, few HCI eco-feedback studies have attempted to measure behavior change. This leads to two overarching questions: (1) what can HCI learn from environmental psychology and (2) what role should HCI have in designing and evaluating eco-feedback technology? To help answer these questions, this paper conducts a comparative survey of eco-feedback technology, including 89 papers from environmental psychology and 44 papers from the HCI and UbiComp literature. We also provide an overview of predominant models of proenvironmental behaviors and a summary of key motivation techniques to promote this behavior.

© All rights reserved Froehlich et al. and/or their publisher

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Findlater, Leah, Jansen, Alex, Shinohara, Kristen, Dixon, Morgan, Kamb, Peter, Rakita, Joshua and Wobbrock, Jacob O. (2010): Enhanced area cursors: reducing fine pointing demands for people with motor impairments. In: Proceedings of the 2010 ACM Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology 2010. pp. 153-162.

Computer users with motor impairments face major challenges with conventional mouse pointing. These challenges are mostly due to fine pointing corrections at the final stages of target acquisition. To reduce the need for correction-phase pointing and to lessen the effects of small target size on acquisition difficulty, we introduce four enhanced area cursors, two of which rely on magnification and two of which use goal crossing. In a study with motor-impaired and able-bodied users, we compared the new designs to the point and Bubble cursors, the latter of which had not been evaluated for users with motor impairments. Two enhanced area cursors, the Visual-Motor-Magnifier and Click-and-Cross, were the most successful new designs for users with motor

© All rights reserved Findlater et al. and/or their publisher

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Findlater, Leah and McGrenere, Joanna (2010): Beyond performance: Feature awareness in personalized interfaces. In International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, 68 (3) pp. 121-137.

Personalized graphical user interfaces have the potential to reduce visual complexity and improve interaction efficiency by tailoring elements such as menus and toolbars to better suit an individual user's needs. When an interface is personalized to make useful features more accessible for a user's current task, however, there may be a negative impact on the user's awareness of the full set of available features, making future tasks more difficult. To assess this tradeoff we introduce awareness as an evaluation metric to be used in conjunction with performance. We then discuss three studies we have conducted, which show that personalized interfaces tradeoff awareness of unused features for performance gains on core tasks. The first two studies, previously published and presented only in summary, demonstrate this tradeoff by measuring awareness using a recognition test of unused features in the interface. The studies also evaluated two different types of personalized interfaces: a layered interfaces approach and an adaptive split menu approach. The third study, presented in full, focuses on adaptive split menus and extends results from the first two studies to show that different levels of awareness also correspond to an impact on performance when users are asked to complete new tasks. Based on all three studies and a survey of related work, we outline a design space of personalized interfaces and present several factors that could affect the tradeoff between core task performance and awareness. Finally, we provide a set of design implications that should be considered for personalized interfaces.

© All rights reserved Findlater and McGrenere and/or Academic Press

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Findlater, Leah, Moffatt, Karyn, McGrenere, Joanna and Dawson, Jessica (2009): Ephemeral adaptation: the use of gradual onset to improve menu selection performance. In: Proceedings of ACM CHI 2009 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2009. pp. 1655-1664.

We introduce ephemeral adaptation, a new adaptive GUI technique that improves performance by reducing visual search time while maintaining spatial consistency. Ephemeral adaptive interfaces employ gradual onset to draw the user's attention to predicted items: adaptively predicted items appear abruptly when the menu is opened, but non-predicted items fade in gradually. To demonstrate the benefit of ephemeral adaptation we conducted two experiments with a total of 48 users to show: (1) that ephemeral adaptive menus are faster than static menus when accuracy is high, and are not significantly slower when it is low and (2) that ephemeral adaptive menus are also faster than adaptive highlighting. While we focused on user-adaptive GUIs, ephemeral adaptation should be applicable to a broad range of visually complex tasks.

© All rights reserved Findlater et al. and/or ACM Press

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Findlater, Leah, Balakrishnan, Ravin and Toyama, Kentaro (2009): Comparing semiliterate and illiterate users' ability to transition from audio+text to text-only interaction. In: Proceedings of ACM CHI 2009 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2009. pp. 1751-1760.

Multimodal interfaces with little or no text have been shown to be useful for users with low literacy. However, this research has not differentiated between the needs of the fully illiterate and semiliterate -- those who have basic literacy but cannot read and write fluently. Text offers a fast and unambiguous mode of interaction for literate users and the exposure to text may allow for incidental improvement of reading skills. We conducted two studies that explore how semiliterate users with very little education might benefit from a combination of text and audio as compared to illiterate and literate users. Results show that semiliterate users reduced their use of audio support even during the first hour of use and over several hours this reduction was accompanied by a gain in visual word recognition; illiterate users showed no similar improvement. Semiliterate users should thus be treated differently from illiterate users in interface design.

© All rights reserved Findlater et al. and/or ACM Press

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Shoemaker, Garth, Findlater, Leah, Dawson, Jessica Q. and Booth, Kellogg S. (2009): Mid-air text input techniques for very large wall displays. In: Proceedings of the 2009 Conference on Graphics Interface 2009. pp. 231-238.

Traditional text input modalities, namely keyboards, are often not appropriate for use when standing in front of very large wall displays. Direct interaction techniques, such as handwriting, are better, but are not well suited to situations where users are not in close physical proximity to the display. We discuss the potential of mid-air interaction techniques for text input on very large wall displays, and introduce two factors, distance-dependence and visibility-dependence, which are useful for segmenting the design space of mid-air techniques. We then describe three techniques that were designed with the goal of exploring the design space, and present a comparative evaluation of those techniques. Questions raised by the evaluation were investigated further in a second evaluation focusing on distance-dependence. The two factors of distance- and visibility-dependence can guide the design of future text input techniques, and our results suggest that distance-independent techniques may be best for use with very large wall displays.

© All rights reserved Shoemaker et al. and/or their publisher

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Lanir, Joel, Booth, Kellogg S. and Findlater, Leah (2008): Observing presenters' use of visual aids to inform the design of classroom presentation software. In: Proceedings of ACM CHI 2008 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems April 5-10, 2008. pp. 695-704.

Large classrooms have traditionally provided multiple blackboards on which an entire lecture could be visible. In recent decades, classrooms were augmented with a data projector and screen, allowing computer-generated slides to replace hand-written blackboard presentations and overhead transparencies as the medium of choice. Many lecture halls and conference rooms will soon be equipped with multiple projectors that provide large, high-resolution displays of comparable size to an old fashioned array of blackboards. The predominant presentation software, however, is still designed for a single medium-resolution projector. With the ultimate goal of designing rich presentation tools that take full advantage of increased screen resolution and real estate, we conducted an observational study to examine current practice with both traditional whiteboards and blackboards, and computer-generated slides. We identify several categories of observed usage, and highlight differences between traditional media and computer slides. We then present design guidelines for presentation software that capture the advantages of the old and the new and describe a working prototype based on those guidelines that more fully utilizes the capabilities of multiple displays.

© All rights reserved Lanir et al. and/or ACM Press

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Findlater, Leah and McGrenere, Joanna (2008): Impact of screen size on performance, awareness, and user satisfaction with adaptive graphical user interfaces. In: Proceedings of ACM CHI 2008 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems April 5-10, 2008. pp. 1247-1256.

Adaptive personalization, where the system adapts the interface to a user's needs, has the potential for significant performance benefits on small screen devices. However, research on adaptive interfaces has almost exclusively focused on desktop displays. To explore how well previous findings generalize to small screen devices, we conducted a study with 36 subjects to compare adaptive interfaces for small and desktop-sized screens. Results show that high accuracy adaptive menus have an even larger positive impact on performance and satisfaction when screen real estate is constrained. The drawback of the high accuracy menus, however, is that they reduce the user's awareness of the full set of items in the interface, potentially making it more difficult for users to learn about new features.

© All rights reserved Findlater and McGrenere and/or ACM Press

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Findlater, Leah, Grenere, Joanna M. and Modjeska, David (2008): Evaluation of a role-based approach for customizing a complex development environment. In: Proceedings of ACM CHI 2008 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems April 5-10, 2008. pp. 1267-1270.

Coarse-grained approaches to customization allow the user to enable or disable groups of features at once, rather than individual features. While this may reduce the complexity of customization and encourage more users to customize, the research challenges of designing such approaches have not been fully explored. To address this limitation, we conducted an interview study with 14 professional software developers who use an integrated development environment that provides a role-based, coarse-grained approach to customization. We identify challenges of designing coarse-grained customization models, including issues of functionality partitioning, presentation, and individual differences. These findings highlight potentially critical design choices, and provide direction for future work.

© All rights reserved Findlater et al. and/or ACM Press

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Findlater, Leah and McGrenere, Joanna (2007): Evaluating Reduced-Functionality Interfaces According to Feature Findability and Awareness. In: Baranauskas, Maria Ceclia Calani, Palanque, Philippe A., Abascal, Julio and Barbosa, Simone Diniz Junqueira (eds.) DEGAS 2007 - Proceedings of the 1st International Workshop on Design and Evaluation of e-Government Applications and Services September 11th, 2007, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. pp. 592-605.

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Tee, Kimberly, Moffatt, Karyn, Findlater, Leah, MacGregor, Eve, McGrenere, Joanna, Purves, Barbara and Fels, Sidney (2005): A visual recipe book for persons with language impairments. In: Proceedings of ACM CHI 2005 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2005. pp. 501-510.

Cooking is a daily activity for many people. However, traditional text recipes are often prohibitively difficult to follow for people with language disorders, such as aphasia. We have developed a multi-modal application that leverages the retained ability of aphasic individuals to recognize image-based representations of objects, providing a presentation format that can be more easily followed than a traditional text recipe. Through a systematic approach to developing a visual language for cooking, and the subsequent case study evaluation of a prototype developed according to this language, we show that a combination of visual instructions and navigational structure can help individuals with relatively large language deficits to cook more independently.

© All rights reserved Tee et al. and/or ACM Press

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Findlater, Leah and McGrenere, Joanna (2004): A comparison of static, adaptive, and adaptable menus. In: Dykstra-Erickson, Elizabeth and Tscheligi, Manfred (eds.) Proceedings of ACM CHI 2004 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems April 24-29, 2004, Vienna, Austria. pp. 89-96.

Software applications continue to grow in terms of the number of features they offer, making personalization increasingly important. Research has shown that most users prefer the control afforded by an adaptable approach to personalization rather than a system-controlled adaptive approach. No study, however, has compared the efficiency of the two approaches. In a controlled lab study with 27 subjects we compared the measured and perceived efficiency of three menu conditions: static, adaptable and adaptive. Each was implemented as a split menu, in which the top four items remained static, were adaptable by the subject, or adapted according to the subject's frequently and recently used items. The static menu was found to be significantly faster than the adaptive menu, and the adaptable menu was found to be significantly faster than the adaptive menu under certain conditions. The majority of users preferred the adaptable menu overall. Implications for interface design are discussed.

© All rights reserved Findlater and McGrenere and/or ACM Press

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McGrenere, Joanna, Davies, Rhian, Findlater, Leah, Graf, Peter, Klawe, Maria, Moffatt, Karyn, Purves, Barbara and Yang, Sarah (2003): Insights from the aphasia project: designing technology for and with people who have aphasia. In: Proceedings of the 2003 ACM Conference on Universal Usability 2003. pp. 112-118.

This paper explores a number of HCI research issues in the context of the Aphasia Project, a recently established project on the design of assistive technology for aphasic individuals. Key issues include the problems of achieving effective design and evaluation for a user population with an extremely high degree of variance, and user-centered design for a user population with significant communication impairments. We describe the Aphasia Project and our initial approaches to dealing with these issues. Similar issues arise in many areas of assistive technology, so we expect our paper to be of general interest to the research community.

© All rights reserved McGrenere et al. and/or ACM Press

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