Friday, May 02, 2014

Interactivity Studies

One of the most neglected aspects of HCI is, in my view, the notion of interactivity. When I look at some of my own research I realize that I have engaged in interactivity studies for quite some time. I also realize (just back from CHI) that it is not a lot of research done in our field today with a focus on examining interactivity. 

Interactivity Studies means to me research that is focused on the aspect of our field that no other field or discipline focus on, that is, the actual interaction between humans and some form of computational artifacts. I am sure that many will argue against this statement and I am open to reconsider it when I am shown good examples of interactivity studies in the way I think about it. 

So, here are some publications that I have been involved with over the years that are clearly examples of Interactivity Studies.

Lars-Erik Janlert and Erik Stolterman. 2010. Complex interaction. ACM Trans. Comput.-Hum. Interact. 17, 2, Article 8 (May 2010), 32 pages. DOI=10.1145/1746259.1746262

Janlert, L-E. & Stolterman, E. (1997). The character of things. Design Studies Vol 18, No 3, July (1997), 297-314.

Youn-kyung Lim, Erik Stolterman, Heekyoung Jung, and Justin Donaldson. 2007. Interaction gestalt and the design of aesthetic interactions. In Proceedings of the 2007 conference on Designing pleasurable products and interfaces (DPPI '07). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 239-254.

Well, I thought I would have more examples, but maybe I was wrong. I have two more articles on the way with Lars/Erik Janlert that clearly would end up on this list but they are in progress still.


erl1987 said...

I agree that there is little research done for interactivity. In the corporate setting, research is done in a subjective manner during the iterative design process, to gather insights and reflections upon the most appropriate solution from an interactive perspective. Interactive research is done as an afterthought, once a concept is identified and explored. The gap is that we do not consider interaction up front which may ultimately impact the holistic design concept. Further more, there is a significant lack of objevtive research being done because people are not asking the right quedtions - they are focused on the "this design, here and now." Objective research is what, in my opinion, would support major paradigm shifts and promote long term use over a variety of computational artifacts.

Erik Stolterman said...

HI erl1987
Thanks for your comment. I appreciate your post and I fully agree with you. There is a need for "objective" research in the way you describe it, even though I would maybe not use the word "objective". Thanks again

Heekyoung Jung said...

Hi Erik!

Nice to see this posting. Maybe not directly related, but I was also thinking about what is special about interaction with computational things (compared to interactions with other things) and what is interaction design (compared to other design practices).

It was refreshing to read an old article, Man-Computer Symbiosis by Licklider, especially by looking at "something" happening between human and computational things rather philosophically :)


Erik Stolterman said...

Hi Heekyoung
Good to hear from you!
Do you have a copy of the article you mention that you can email me? Sounds interesting!

Vintage Leather Bags said...

Interactive studies is very important