Contribution in edited book
Designing Usable Adaptations

Publication Details
Kniewel, R.; Evers, C.; Schmidt, L.; Geihs, K.
David, K.; Geihs, K.; Leimeister, J. M.; Roßnagel, A.; Schmidt, L.; Stumme, G.; Wacker, A.
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Socio-technical Design of Ubiquitous Computing Systems


Ubiquitous computing systems are able to adapt their functionality, behaviour, and interface characteristics according to the user’s context. The user’s context is computed by e.g. sensor data, data about the user’s current activity, or the environment. By performing adaptations, these systems attempt to adequately support users in accomplishing their tasks in any situation. However, adaptations that impact the user interface, e.g. by integration of services, may cause usability problems, for example when they disrupt the user in accomplishing a task. There is no established set of guidelines or comprehensive design solutions to overcome potential usability problems in adaptive applications. In this chapter we present our notification-based design approach, which was beneficial to design usable adaptations for the adaptive application Meet-U. We analyse the results of a user study with 52 potential users in which we have evaluated the usability of our notification-based design solutions. We identified suitable design solutions for five different adaptations providing different supportive services in different contexts of use. These services are: navigational services, event services, a device muting service, and an environmental service. We also exposed the general requirement for a task-specific and context-specific design for adaptations.

Last updated on 2019-09-01 at 15:16