THE NEW COMPUTING
The old computing is about what computers can do;
The user experience with information and computing technology could be dramatically improved. Successful technologies are those that are truly useful and therefore in harmony with users' needs. They must support relationships and activities that enrich the users' experiences.
Information and communication technologies are most appreciated when users experience a sense of security, mastery, and accomplishment. These technologies enable users to relax, enjoy and explore.
The New Computing movement stems from the book "Leonardo's Laptop: Human Needs and
the New Computing Technologies" by Ben
Shneiderman (MIT Press, summer
2002). The Table of Contents and the draft of the Chapter 1 summarize the arguments.
Our 3-year research effort to study user frustration resulted in a set of seven papers.
Our colleague Prof. Kent Norman has carried out a large online survey of computer rage with compelling stories of user anger, and his own special style of videos showing safe (amusing + disturbing) destruction of computer technologies.
What is the new computing?
Usable: Users experience with information and computing technology could be dramatically better. Its time to get angry about the quality of our computing environments: too many crashes, too many confusing designs, too many frustrations. We need to pressure software, hardware, and network developers to work together to develop more reliable and comprehensible products.
Universal: The New Computing is also about empowerment for everyone. Effective designs should be usable by every one: young and old, novice and expert, well and poorly educated, owners of new and older computers, speakers of English and other languages. Universal designs can improve the quality for all users.
Useful: The New Computing is about enabling users to concentrate on their personal needs and support their relationships with others. Users appreciate information and communication technologies most when they experience a sense of safety, mastery, and accomplishment. The New Computing technologies will enable users to accomplish their tasks and to relax, enjoy, and explore.
How can you help promote the new computing?
Website maintained by Irina Ceaparu. Last updated December 20, 2002.