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Guidelines for hypermedia usability inspection

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2 Author(s)
Costabile, M.F. ; Bari Univ., Italy ; Matera, M.

Our research addresses evaluating the usability of hypermedia systems oth offline (CD-ROMs) and online (Web) - and tries to capture the features that most characterize the specific nature of these systems. In this article, we describe an inspection technique that lets evaluators concentrate on the usability of specific aspects of hypermedia applications, such as information and navigation structuring, media integration and synchronization, and so on, without neglecting the surface aspects. Our technique uses operational guidelines, called abstract tasks (ATs), which systematically drive the inspection activities, allowing even less experienced evaluators to come up with valuable results. As they currently exist, we see ATs as evaluation patterns, which make it possible to maximize the reuse of an evaluator's expertise. That is, reuse takes advantage of previous work, thus reducing the effort to create a new one. ATs support the reuse of an evaluator's know-how. Their goal is to capture usability inspection expertise and to express it in a precise and understandable form, so that others can easily reproduce, communicate and exploit it. Our current work is devoted to extending the AT library to cover specific usability issues related to e-commerce Web sites

Published in:

MultiMedia, IEEE  (Volume:8 ,  Issue: 1 )

Date of Publication:

Jan-Mar 2001

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