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Lecture 5

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New College
Dan Dolderman

CCT: Lecture 5 10/11/2012 10:06:00 AM Picture superiority effect Theories of visual perception Digitization of text Fair-use, ebooks, and the death of newspapers Contemporary communication technologies disrupt traditional business models Contemporary communication technologies disrupt traditional legal definitions Symbols, pictograms and icons are widely used components of user interfaces in ICT applications and services e.g. navigation, status indication and function invocation. Picture superiority effect Pictures are more memorable than words Pictograms: Images that represent a word; they are symbolic representations of an object or an idea Icons: A graphic on a visual display terminal that represents both functions (actions) and objects on the computer system. Icons may represent a file, folder, application or device on a computer operating system. Well-designed icons and symbols can have the following advantages over written commands and labels. They can be: More distinctive; More efficient for denoting spatial attributes; Easier to recognize and remember over long periods of time; Easier and faster to learn when the size of the symbol set is small; Language independent Icons are time sensitive, culturally relevant, and poorly designed icons are highly problematic. Icons are NOT universal October 11, 2012 Five Guidelines for Good Icon Design Simplicity: Apple Human Interface Guidelines (2008) recommend using one easily recognized object, because the basic shape or silhouette of an icon can help users to quickly identify it. Ziegler and Fähnrich (1988) also state that graphical symbols should be constructed with as few graphical components as possible – usually not more than 2 or 3 components. Text icon size with relevant user group: According to the ETSI (European Telecommunications Standards Institute) standard 201 379 (1988), no general recommendation can be given on the minimum acceptable size of an icon, this is because what is acceptable depends on a number of parameters: (a) The user (b) Viewing distance between the user and the interface, ( c ) The complexity of the symbol: (d) The display qualities of the medium including: the resolution, the contrast, the focus and glare, (e) The viewing conditions including environmental factors such as poor illumination, and (f) physiological and psychological factors such as fatigue and workload. Shape: According to the ETSI standard 201 379 (1998), on some equipment, particularly small machines, special manufacturing considerations or lack of space preclude the use of graphical symbols of the exact recommended shape. In such cases, the design of the graphical symbols used may be modified provided that their pattern differs as little as practicable and still conveys clearly the intended meaning. Color: An investigation by fennel (2006) into personal preference for the color contrast of icons revealed a preference for the following color contrast option: black icons on a white button, with a black surround. The Apple Human Interface Guidelines (2008) recommend using color “judiciously to help the icon tell its story”. Color should not be added just to make the icon more colorful and smooth gradients typically work better than sharp delineations of color. Optimally 2-4 colors should be used. Position: The position of labels with text or icons is crucial for an unfamiliar user with impaired vision. All too often labels are positioned in a way that they are obscured from the user’s view when the controls are being operated. Both left handed use and right-handed controls should also be considered. Theories of visual perception Johannes Kepler and retinal image (1604) – discovered that retinal images are upside down, and 2 dimensional. October 11, 2012 Perceptual hypotheses (1940s) – Constructivists such as Hermann von Helmholtz – external world cannot be directly perceived because of the poverty of the information in the retinal images, we interpret the sensory data on the basis of stored knowledge acquired through learning. The ecological approach to perception (1950s) – James Gibson – information available in the visual environment to an active observer provides information to the viewer. The Gestalt school (1930s – present) – perception through neural isomorphism (a substance or organism that exactly corresponds in form with another.) i.e. what we see reflects isomorphic patterns in the brain. The computational approach (1970s) – Vision seen as the process of forming a description of what is in the scene from the retinal images. How the eye works The eye takes in the image and it’s upside down. The brain makes sense of it. Digitization of text Definition: Any process by which information is captured in digital form, whether as an image, textual data, as a sound file, or any other format. Why digitize texts? Page Image: A digital image of a page of text, captured by a scanner or digital camera, and expressed as a set of pixels in a format such as JPEG or TIFF. OCR: Optic
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