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Just-in-time Information Interfaces: A new Paradigm for Information Discovery and Exploration

Laqua, S; (2015) Just-in-time Information Interfaces: A new Paradigm for Information Discovery and Exploration. Doctoral thesis, UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

We live in a time of increasing information overload. Described as “a byproduct of the lack of maturity of the information age” (Spira & Goldes, 2007), information overload can be painful, and harm our concentration - the resulting choice overload impacts out decision-making abilities. Given the problem of information overload, and the unsatisfying nature of human-information interaction using traditional browsing or keyword-based search, this research investigates how the design of just-in-time information services can improve the user experience of goal-driven interactions with information. This thesis explores the design of just-in-time information services through the iterative development of two strands of high-level prototypes (FMI and KnowDis). I custombuilt both prototype systems for the respective evaluations, which have then been conducted as part of a series of lab-based eye-tracking studies (FMI) as well as two field studies (KnowDis). The lab-based eye-tracking studies were conducted with 100 participants measuring task performance, user satisfaction, and gaze behaviour. The lab studies found that the FMI prototype design did improve the performance aspect of the user experience for all participants and improved the usability aspect of the user experience for novice participants. However, the FMI prototype design seemed to be less effective and usable for expert participants. Two field studies were conducted as part of a two-year research collaboration, which lasted a total of 10 weeks and involved approximately 70 knowledge workers overall from across the globe. As part of those field studies, 46 semi-structured interviews were also conducted. The field studies found that the KnowDis prototype design did improve the user experience for participants overall by making work-related information search more efficient. However, while the KnowDis prototype design was useful for some knowledge workers and even integrated seamlessly into their day-to-day work, it appeared to be less useful and even distracting to others.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: Just-in-time Information Interfaces: A new Paradigm for Information Discovery and Exploration
Event: UCL (University College London)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > School of BEAMS
UCL > School of BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1470161
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