Author Archives: Petri

Ries. E. The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses. Crown Business. 2011

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Ries’ book is well known in start-up scene. For a computer scientist/software engineer, the idea of the book resonates well with the agile software development movement. Ries pushes (start-up) companies to iterate the core product offering and business model of … Continue reading

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Johnson, S. Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation. Penguin Group. 2011

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In his book, Johnson parallels technology development/innovation with biological evolution. The core idea of the book is that like evolution also innovation benefit from reinventing/reusing, sharing, openness, errors and randomness. Johnson presents both historical and more current examples of innovation … Continue reading

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Rogers, Y. HCI Theory: Classical, Modern and Contemporary. Part V

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  In the discussion, Rogers identifies most and least successful theories in the history of HCI as well as the main changes that have happened in theories. According to her, the most successful theories in HCI have been conceptual frameworks … Continue reading

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Rogers, Y. HCI Theory: Classical, Modern and Contemporary. Part IV

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The sixth chapter (Contemporary Theory) describes the recent turns to design, to culture, to the wild, and to embodiment in HCI theory. According to Rogers, the background theme in all these is human values. Human values are taking the place … Continue reading

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Rogers, Y. HCI Theory: Classical, Modern and Contemporary. Part III

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The fifth chapter (Modern theories) of the book covers cognitive approaches that differed from traditional cognitive psychology, as well as social approaches that emerged as reactions against dominant cognitive approaches. In addition activity theory and grounded theory are handled as … Continue reading

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Rogers, Y. HCI Theory: Classical, Modern and Contemporary. Part II

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The fourth chapter (Classical Theories) covers the traditional and “old” theories in HCI, i.e. theories derived from cognitive psychology. The chapter focuses on three approaches: body of knowledge, applying of basic research, and cognitive modeling. Body of knowledge means the … Continue reading

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Rogers, Y. HCI Theory: Classical, Modern and Contemporary. Part I

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In introductory chapters (1. Introduction, 2 The Backdrop to HCI Theory, 3 The Role and Contribution of Theory in HCI), Rogers gives a nice overall view of theories and their role in HCI. The main takeaway is that HCI as … Continue reading

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Benford, S., Greenhalgh, C., Giannachi, G., Walker, B., Marshall, J., Rodden, T. Uncomfortable User Experience. Communications of the ACM. Vol 56, No 9. 2013

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CHI article on the cover of the CACM = must read. Benford et al.’s article is about creating and utilizing uncomfortable user experiences in design. The authors derive examples and ideas from art, media and amusement parks. The main idea … Continue reading

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Siegel, D., Sorin, A., Thompson, M., Dray, S. Fine-Tuning User Research to Drive Innovation. Interactions. September-October 2013. pp. 42-49

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The article focuses on interesting and difficult theme of innovating based on user-research. “User-centered innovation” is problematic area of design and engineering since traditional user research methods seem to produce basis for incremental improvements instead of new and novel ideas … Continue reading

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Bodker, S., Klokmose, C.N. Dynamics in artifact ecologies. NordiCHI’12. pp. 448-457.

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The paper aims to continue discussions of artifact ecologies, i.e. artifacts a person owns, has access to, and uses. The focus on the paper is especially on changes of one’s artifact ecology when new artifact is introduces. The authors have … Continue reading

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Klein, G., Calderwood, R., Macgregor, D. Critical Decision Method for Eliciting Knowledge. IEEE Transaction on System, Man, and Cybernetics, vol 19, no 3, (1989)

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Klein et al.’s paper describes an interview method that focuses on non-routine events. The method has been developed for studying decision making but it seems to be potentially applicable to UCD/HCI also. The core idea of the method is to … Continue reading

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Christian, B. The Most Human Human: What talking with computers teaches us about what it means to be alive (2011)

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Christian’s book is a story (almost a diary) about participating to the annual Loebner Prize Competition as a human confederate. Loebner prize competition is basically a Turing test competition where chatbots compete agains each other and the winner is declared … Continue reading

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Cockton, G. & Woolrych, A. Sale Must End: Should Discount Methods be Cleared off HCI’s Shelves? Interactions, September+October 2002. 13-18

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Interactions’ article is a critical analysis of the so called discount usability methods. By discount methods, the authors mean almost all usability inspection methods that I consider business as usual in industry, i.e. testing with only 3-5 users, heuristic evaluations … Continue reading

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K. Krippendorff. Meaning of artifacts in language.Chapter four of The Semantic Turn: A New Foundation for Design. Taylor & Francis Group. 2006. pp. 147-176.

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The fourth chapter approaches the meaning of artifacts from the perspective of language. From this perspective the use of artifacts is only a small part of their life. Artifacts are discussed already before they exists and they can also be … Continue reading

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K. Krippendorff. Meanings in the lives of artifacts. Chapter five of The Semantic Turn: A New Foundation for Design. Taylor & Francis Group. 2006. pp. 177-191.

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In chapter five, Krippendorff analyses how the meaning of artifacts change during their life cycles. For Krippendorff, the traditional life cycle of an artifact (design, production, use, retirement) is however almost an illusion. The chapter starts with a thought provoking … Continue reading

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K. Krippendorff. Meaning in an ecology of artifacts. Chapter six of The Semantic Turn: A New Foundation for Design. Taylor & Francis Group. 2006. pp. 193-205.

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The sixth chapter of the book addresses how products link together meaningfully and form an ecology. The concept of ecology is borrowed from biology. An ecological approach to analyzing technology means looking into how ‘species’ of artifacts interact. In practice … Continue reading

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Owen, C. Design Thinking: Noters on its Nature and Use. Design Research Quarterly, Vol 2. No 1, January 2007, pp. 16-27

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The article defines design thinking as a complementary to science thinking and suggests that a balance between them is needed when solving many of the large problems we as a humanity are facing (e.g. large scale unemployment, climate change etc.). … Continue reading

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Brix, A 2009, ‘Does user-driven design drive design-driven users?: Reflections on the conceptual framing of user informed design processes’, Seoul, South Korea, 30-06-10,

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Brix’s article challenges the idea that user-centered approach to design is required in order to ensure usable designs. While the article agrees that involving users to design process is one way to do design, it challenges the dominance of user-driven … Continue reading

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Morris, M.,G. & Dillon, A. How User Perceptions Influence Software Use. IEEE Software, July/August 1997, pp. 58-65.

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The article states that technology acceptance model (TAM) offers theoretically valid and cheap way to evaluate both finished systems and systems under development. In addition the article presents a questionnaire which can be used to measure perceived usefulness, perceived ease … Continue reading

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Brown, T. Design Thinking. Harvard Business Review, June 2008.

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The article defines design thinking as ‘a methodology that imbues the full spectrum of innovation activities with a human-centered design ethos’. Human-centered is further defined as understanding (through observations) what people want, need, like and dislike about particular products. In … Continue reading

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