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Users' Perceptions with Experimental Services and Terminals

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1 Author(s)
Thompson, R.A. ; Bell Lab., Murray Hill, NJ, USA

An experimental access method has been designed to provide a "friendly" interface between a variety of telecommunications services and the user (the one served). The access software and an experimental teleterminal combine the concepts of selection from a menu, traversing a tree, and the relabeling of buttons. The casual observation over many initial users has produced a valuable, if not biased, experience. The purpose of this paper is to share this experience. A comparison is made between access of service by oral communication and by a typical interaction at a computer terminal. A number of conjectures and observations are presented in the areas of the organization and functionality of the access tree and the sense of "climbing" through it, utilization of the teleterminal's display screen, and a variety of user aids. The emotional nature of such human-machine systems and several emotional characteristics which can diminish the subject-user's objectivity are discussed.

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Selected Areas in Communications, IEEE Journal on  (Volume:1 ,  Issue: 2 )