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Completed Research Projects of the IXD Group

2014

Collaborative Digital Research Tool

Groupware systems are all about sharing information which has become a challenge in many institutions. Groupware systems support communication and cooperation in various companies. The existing products on the market cover diverse fields and functions like reference management, interactive whiteboards or even platforms for providing and managing a shared state of knowledge in a project.
At universities the collaboration of students, employees and professors is particularly important. In this context, systematic literature search is one of the essential activities that require efficient collaboration. The aim of the CDRT study was to take a closer look at the process of literature research and to develop a groupware system that supports group research. In the first part of the study existing Groupware systems were analyzed and interviews with eight people (students, research staff, professors) who were familiar with research activities were conducted. The interviews gave information about the demands that a groupware system should ensure. Moreover, the interviews helped to shape a process model defining four stages of the research process in a group

  1. Preparation (define research questions)
  2. Execution
  3. Acquiring and discussing the sources
  4. Writing

The last step describes further processing of research findings. The interviews revealed that this step is very important and part of the research process because the information gathered in the steps before will be used in this step and sometimes iterations between these four steps are necessary. If new questions appear while writing, the previous steps have to be repeated.
While none of the analyzed groupware systems covered the research process as a whole, the new tool will support all four stages of the model and offers various group functions to support the collaborative work. A first web-based prototype has already been developed.
In the second part of the study the prototype was validated with the same target groups as before (students, research staff, professors). The results of the validation pointed out the strengths and weaknesses of the system and where the existing concept has to be further adapted.

For more information please contact us or have a look at our webblog , where the study is described in more detail.

2010 - 2013
Shadow Robotic System for Independent Living (SRS)
The SRS project developed a semi-autonomous control architecture and user interfaces for a service robot to assist elderly people in their home. The robot can manipulate and carry objects and provide assistance in cases of emergency. When the robot encounters a problem it cannot solve autonomously, operators at a remote location (e.g. family members or call center staff) can assist task execution or take complete control of the robot. Stuttgart Media University's responsibilities were to determine user needs, to design the human-robot interaction, and to evaluate the user interfaces in an iterative process.


Further information (some of it in German language):
[Project website]
[SRS robot demo video]
[NTV national TV program with SRS footage starting at 6:00min, June 2013]
[RegioTV broadcast on SRS user evaluation, March 2013]
[Spiegel.de robot video, March 2013]
[Newspaper article on SRS user evaluation, Stuttgarter Zeitung, March 2013]
[HdM press release on SRS user evaluation, March 2013]
[HdM news release on House of Lords event, Nov 2012]
[Interview on SRS project goals, March 2010]
[Interview on SRS progress]


2009 - 2013
Formative UX Evaluation Methodology
In this project we developed evaluation methods for assessing the effects of the design of interactive products on users' feelings. The goal of such evaluations is to provide designers with the necessary information to improve their products to offer a better user experience. This project was self-funded. A main outcome was the development of the valence method. See publication record of, e.g., Prof. Michael Burmester between 2010 and 2013 for publications on this method. [Publications on the valence method]




2011 - 2012
Enhancing Interconnectivity Through Infoconnectivity (IC-IC)
The IC-IC project's aim was to enhance interconnectivity of short and long distance transport networks through passenger-focused interlinked information connectivity. [project website]



2007 - 2011
User Habits in Visual Scanning of Web Pages
In this project we investigated spatiotemporal patterns in attention shifts of users repeatedly visiting web pages.
[more on Tobii.com]











2011
Improving the User Experience of Mobile Phone Photography
Taking photos and shooting videos with mobile phones are increasingly popular activities. The project's goal was to increase the joy of use and perceived pleasure while using the camera function of a mobile phone. To achieve this, several experimental product concepts were developed and evaluated and design recommendations were derived. This project was carried out for a corporation who wished to stay anonymous and results were not made public.

2010 - 2011
Visual Rhetorics 2: Rules, Scope, and Rhetoric Zero
The Visual Rhetorics project was lead by Bern University of the Arts and funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation. The project investigated the effects of intentions of designers (expressed through stylistic devices) on users' responses and emotions. Stuttgart Media University developed and applied interview techniques and eye movement analysis to elucidate these relationships. [project website]



2010 - 2011
Emotional and Aesthetic Effects of Medical Equipment's User Interface Design
The project studied the effects of design aspects and stylistic devices on the emotions and aesthetic perceptions of professional users in the medical domain. The goal was to be able to make design decisions based on a deeper understanding of these mechanisms. The project was carried out in co-operation with the User Interface Design department of the Corporate Technology devision of Siemens AG in Munich.


2009 - 2010
Theoretical Foundations, Reception, and Design of Interactive Information Graphics
This project focused on the experience and design of interactive information graphics. It was funded by the federal state's Ministry of Science, Research, and the Arts (Ministerium für Wissenschaft, Forschung und Kunst Baden-Württemberg). The project's concluding symposium took place in November 2011. [poster Mensch & Computer 2012]


2009 - 2010
User Experience Quantification
We developed methods for measuring and evaluating user experience in this project with partner Deutsche Telekom Laboratories.


(Projects completed before 2010 not listed)

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