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Usability, User Interface Design, and HCI Bibliography

Compiled by Chauncey E. Wilson July, 2001 [email protected] [email protected] This bibliography is updated periodically. If you would like to be on the update list, please send EMAIL to Chauncey Wilson at [email protected] In a change from earlier versions, this bibliography is now arranged by categories. The Table of Contents lists the new categories. Some books from an earlier version of this bibliography have been removed because they were superceded or I decided that they added clutter without being a useful reference. I include ISBNs for some books and also include notes whether they were hard to find or out of print. If you have a good book that you would like to see added, please send me an email (I have to read it before I include it). If you see a typo or mistake, let me know and I'll correct it in the next update. Thanks.

Table of Contents

Usability Testing and Evaluation ________________________________________________________ 2 User-Centered Design, Requirements, Prototyping, and Modeling ______________________________ 5 Survey and Questionnaire Design and Implementation______________________________________ 13 New Technologies and Hot Topics in HCI ________________________________________________ 15 Web Design and Usability _____________________________________________________________ 18 Internationalization __________________________________________________________________ 20 Human Factors, Cognition, and Statistics ________________________________________________ 21 Color, Icons, Perception, Text, Visualization, and Graphic Design ____________________________ 23 Project Management, Ethics, and Politics ________________________________________________ 27 Online Communities, Psychology and Sociology of the Internet_______________________________ 28 E-Commerce Books on Branding, Design, and Sales Success ________________________________ 29


Usability Testing and Evaluation

Bauersfeld, P. Software by Design: Creating People Friendly Software. M&T Books: New York, NY, 1994. ISBN: 1558282963 (Out of print).

Bauersfeld's book is a concise and clear summary of design and evaluation methodologies. The author has good practical advice on techniques like scenario building, storyboards, user interviews, and task analysis. Each chapter has a hints section and some exercises. This book, like Bickford's Interface Design, goes for breadth rather than depth so this is a good book to get ideas, but you will need additional depth to actually implement some of the methods successfully.

Bickford, P. Interface Design: The Art of Developing Easy-to-Use Software. AP Professional: Boston, MA, 1997. ISBN: 0120958600 .

Bickford's book is an introduction to basic GUI design issues. The book contains 38 short chapters that were based on columns on human interface issues for an Apple developers' magazine. He starts out by discussing the difficulty of designing for a complex world then covers common design topics like error messages, toolbars, tabbed dialogs, icons, and responsiveness. Part 3 of his book deals with issues of Web computing. Part 4 deals with multimedia. Part 5 covers usability testing, prototyping, and interface fads. The book concludes with some case studies and philosophy of user-centered design. The breadth of topics is impressive; the depth is not.

Branaghan, R. J. (Ed.) Design by People for People: Essays on Usability. Usability Professionals' Association: Chicago, IL, 2001.

These essays are from the UPA newsletter, Common Ground. The essays are packed with information that usability practitioners will find useful. For example, Joe Dumas has informative essays on how many participants in a test are enough and on the think-aloud method; Howard Tamler has an essay on when and how much to intervene during usability testing.

Dumas, J. and Redish, J. A Practical Guide to Usability Testing (Revised Edition). Intellect: Exeter, UK, 1999. ISBN: 1841500208 (Hard to find).

This book provides excellent practical advice for groups who want to initiate usability testing. Both new and experienced usability professionals will find this book useful. Topics include planning and preparing for usability tests, analyzing data, and communicating the results. This book can be a bit hard to find since the new publisher prints a limited number of books as demand occurs.

Hix, D. and Hartson, H. R. Developing User Interfaces: Ensuring Usability Through Product & Process. Wiley: New York, NY, 1993.

Hix and Hartson's book provides excellent guidance on the entire user interface design process. The first part of the book focuses on standards and guidelines; the second part describes design, specification, and evaluation methods that designers can employ during the software development lifecycle.


Jordan, P. An Introduction to Usability. Taylor & Francis: London, UK, 1998. ISBN: 0748407626.

Jordan's book has only 120 pages, but those pages contain an excellent survey of usability topics. Topics include usability requirements, measures of usability, general principles of design, requirements gathering methods, prototyping techniques, empirical and non-empirical usability methods, and procedures for conducting usability evaluations. The book uses examples from hardware, software, and documentation and mixes research with practical advice. The book would be most appropriate for new usability practitioners.

Jordan, P. W., Thomas, B., Weerdmeester, B. A. and McClelland, I. L. (Eds.) Usability Evaluation in Industry. Taylor & Francis London, UK, 1996. ISBN 0748404600.

This book has 26 chapters dedicated to elements of usability evaluation, selecting evaluation methods, field studies, informal usability methods, new usability methods, "off-the-self" usability methods, task analysis, and issues relating to usability evaluation. "Quick and dirty" techniques are featured in about 25% of the chapters. The book describes some uncommon techniques like the repertory grid method and the private camera conversation where users are not asked questions, but are simply asked to face a camera in a private cube (with no interviewer or observer) and tell a story about their use of a product. The chapters vary in quality, but overall this book is useful because it introduces some human factors concepts and methods that are seldom considered by usability specialists.

Lindgaard, G. Usability Testing and System Evaluation: A Guide for Designing Useful Computer Systems. Chapman & Hall: London, UK, 1994 (Hard to find).

Gitte Lindgaard's book covers the gamut of usability activities including: cost justifying usability work, user needs analysis, data collection and analysis, communicating usability results, inspection methods, interview and questionnaire methods, laboratory testing, and the integration of usability activities into the design process. There is a lot of practical advice in Lindegaard's book and each chapter has questions and exercises that are useful for self-study or training seminars (there are answers to questions and exercises at the end of the book).

Mayhew, D. The Usability Engineering Lifecycle: A Practitioner's Handbook for User Interface Design. Morgan Kaufmann: San Francisco, CA, 1999. ISBN: 1558605614.

Mayhew's book is a detailed blueprint of the usability engineering life cycle with a wealth of practical advice. This book has four sections: Requirements Analysis, design/Testing/Development, Installation, and Organizational Issues. Each chapter discusses usability engineering tasks, roles, resources, levels of effort, short cuts (quick and dirty techniques to use when a rigorous approach isn't possible), Web notes, and sample work products and templates. The book is both detailed and readable and worthwhile for both new and experienced usability specialists. It may not be a book that you would loan to a development manager though since it is quite thick and might scare him/her.


Monk, A., Wright, P., Haber, J. and Davenport, L. Improving Your HumanComputer Interface: A Practical Technique. Prentice Hall: New York, 1993 (Out of print).

This slim paperback gives practical advice on "Cooperative Evaluation", a technique for uncovering potential usability problems in early prototypes. Appendix 1 is a procedural guide to Cooperative Evaluation containing checklists for preparing and conducting test sessions.

Nielsen, J. Usability Engineering. Morgan Kaufmann: San Francisco, CA, 1994.

Nielsen's Usability Engineering is highly recommended. The book describes the process by which development groups can create usable applications. The book details how usability issues must be considered throughout the development process and provides techniques for gathering usability data. There is excellent information on low-cost usability testing techniques.

Nielsen, J. and Mack, R. L. (Eds.) Usability Inspection Methods. Wiley: New York, NY, 1994. ISBN: 0471018775.

Nielsen and Mack describe the experiences of usability engineers who have applied inspection techniques to user interfaces. User interface inspections are conceptually similar to code inspections and are a serious tool for finding "problems" with user interfaces. Some of the chapters in this book are scholarly rather than practical.

Rubin, J. Handbook of Usability Testing: How to Plan, Design, and Conduct Effective Tests. Wiley: New York, NY, 1994. ISBN: 0471594032.

This handbook is a step-by-step guide to effective usability testing. Rubin provides many tips that will benefit both the new and the experience usability practitioner. The book was written with the assumption that readers won't have human factors training. If you are doing usability testing, you should have this book as well as Dumas and Redish (1999).

Wiklund, M. E. (Ed.) Usability in Practice: How Companies Develop UserFriendly Products. Academic Press: Boston, MA, 1994. ISBN: 0127512500 (Out of print).

Wiklund's book describes the experience of usability engineers and user interface designers at 17 different companies. There is much information on how to create and manage a usability team as well as information on the advantages and disadvantages of various usability methods.


User-Centered Design, Requirements, Prototyping, and Modeling

Abrams, B. The Observational Research Handbook: Understanding How Consumers Live with Your Product. NTC Business Books: Lincolnwood, IL, 2000. ISBN: 0-658-00073-X.

Do you want to understand how consumers use shampoo, off-the-self medication for athlete's foot, or hand cream? This book describes how to conduct observational research in shopping malls, small stores, and homes. This book isn't theoretical. It focuses on practical techniques for planning, recruiting, interviewing, analyzing data, and presenting the results of observational studies. The book doesn't really discuss how to build complex sociotechnical models, but it does provide clear, practical advice for anyone who might get involved in naturalistic observation of consumers.

Arlov, L. GUI Design for Dummies. IDG Books: Foster City, CA, 1997 (Out of print).

This book is not for "dummies". In fact, it is packed with information on how to design usable GUIs. The book covers methods for setting goals, understanding users and their work, choosing the best navigation model, deciding on the right widget for detailed designs, and evaluating usability. The book includes a CD with sample files and documents. One of the sample documents is an outline for a GUI style guide that can be used as a template for a corporate style guide. The book is out if print, but has become a "cult classic" so I would recommend using the Internet to locate a copy.

Baecker, R. M., Grudin, J., Buxton, W. A. S., and Greenberg, S. (Eds.) Readings in Human-Computer Interaction: Toward the Year 2000 (Second Edition). Morgan Kaufmann: San Francisco, 1995.

This book is a collection of classic articles in human-computer interaction. The editors add valuable commentary to the different sections of the book.

Benyon, D., Green, T., and Bental, D. Conceptual Modeling for User Interface Development. Springer: London, 1999.

This book describes how entity-relationship modeling can be applied to the modeling of user interfaces. The book is meant to bridge the gap between software developers and user interface designers, but the method appears to demand a level of rigor that is rarely possible for most practitioners. The examples and exercises are simple, but a real-world example of any significance would require serious mentoring.

Beyer, H. and Holtzblatt, K. Contextual Design: Defining Customer-Centered Systems. Morgan Kaufmann: San Francisco, CA, 1998.

Beyer and Holtzblatt provide a set of practical methods for gathering data about users, tasks, and environments. Techniques for taking these data and generating system designs are explained. The book concludes with chapters on designing and evaluating prototypes and how to integrate contextual design into the software development process.


Borchers, J. A Pattern Approach to Interaction Design. Wiley: Chichester, UK, 2001. ISBN: 0471498289.

This book summarizes that use of pattern languages in user interface design. The author claims that HCI patterns have taken the design world by storm, which isn't quite true. Patterns have a place in design and this book is a first cut at explaining how patterns can be employed in user interface design.

Clements, P. C. (Ed.) Constructing Superior Software. Macmillan Technical Publishing: Indianapolis, IN, 2000.

This book is a joint project of the Software Quality Institute and Macmillan Technical Publishing. There is one excellent chapter on user-centered design by Scott Isensee and Karel Vredenburg, but the strength of the book is that it deals with the wide range of technical and social issues that are involved in designing and implementing high-quality software. I would recommend that all software development managers buy this book, take the day off, and read it from beginning to end.

Carey, J. (Ed.) Human Factors in Information Systems: The Relationship Between User Interface Design and Human Performance. Ablex: Greenwich, CN, 1997. Carroll, J. M. (Ed.) Scenario-Based Design: Envisioning Work and Technology in System Development. Wiley: New York, NY, 1995 (Out of print).

This book has some chapters that practitioners will find useful and some that academics might enjoy. As in other edited books that come out of high-powered workshops, the writing is uneven. On balance, this book is worth having, but practitioners will have to do some work to apply what is presented in the diverse essays.

Carroll, J. M. Making Use: Scenario-Based Design of Human-Computer Interactions. MIT Press: Cambridge, MA, 2000. ISBN: 0262032791. Cohen, L. Quality Function Deployment: How to Make QFD Work for You. Addison-Wesley: Reading, MA, 1995.

QFD is a method for understanding and prioritizing customer input into designs and specifications for products and services. This book describes the QFD process in detail. The QFD process gained some popularity in the late 80s and early 90s, but few software development groups had the discipline to follow the full QFD process. You can use some of the tools of QFD without committing to the full-blown method.

Collins, D. Designing Object-Oriented User Interfaces. Benjamin/Cummings Publishing: Redwood City, CA, 1995. ISBN: 080535350X.


Constantine, L. L. and Lockwood, L. A. D. Software for Use: A Practical Guide to the Models and Methods of Usage-Centered Design. ACM Press: New York, NY, 1999.

Software for Use guides the reader through a structured user interface design process and also provides concrete advice on window layout, menu design, user assistance, icons, and controls. The advantage of this book is that is covers a plethora of topics; the disadvantage is that some topics are given sketchy treatment. The mathematically inclined will enjoy the metrics for essential efficiency (how closely a user interface matches an ideal interface as specified in use cases), task concordance (a measure of the relationship between the frequency of tasks and their difficulty), task visibility, layout uniformity, and visual coherence. There isn't much validation of these metrics, but they do have some face validity.

Cooper, A. The Inmates Are Running the Asylum: Why High-Tech Products Drive Us Crazy and How to Restore the Sanity. Sams: Indianapolis, IN, 1999.

This is a thought-provoking book with an unfortunate title. The title aside, Cooper, as he did in his book About Face, has strong ideas about the problems with software that is developed in isolation from customers. Cooper addresses common software problems, the culture of programming, the importance of personas in design, and designing for pleasure and for power. Though a bit polemic, the book has some good recommendations for improving consumer products. Cooper does minimize the relevance of usability testing in this book.

Cooper, A. About Face: The Essentials of User Interface Design. IDG Books Worldwide: Foster City, CA, 1995.

About Face is a provocative look at both the process and details of user interface design. Cooper starts out by discussing user goals, software models, and high-level user interface design. As the book progresses, Cooper discusses GUI objects like windows, menus, and tabbed dialog boxes. Error prevention is a constant theme throughout the book. The book has many examples of good and bad design (including examples from Windows ® 95 applications). Cooper presents some good ideas and some odd ideas in this book.

Dix, A., Finlay, J., Abowd, G., and Beale, R. Human-Computer Interaction (2nd Edition). Prentice Hall Europe: London, 1998.

This book is a basic text on human-computer interaction. Topics include: human limitations, usability principles, screen design, models of the user, task analysis, evaluation techniques, documentation, and more specialized topics like groupware, the Web, and virtual reality. Each chapter has notes on practical applications of theory and also a set of exercises (some of which are shown with a solution). There is an accompanying Web site:

Gause, D. C. and Weinberg, G. M. Exploring Requirements: Quality Before Design. Dorset House Publishing: New York, NY, 1989.

This book is a collection of ideas on how to gather requirements that meet the needs of customers and users. While not specific to usability requirements, many of the techniques would apply.


Greenbaum, T. L. The Handbook of Focus Group Research: Revised and Expanded Edition. Lexington Books: New York, NY, 1993.

Focus groups are useful for assessing user needs, attitudes, preferences, and suggestions. Greenbaum's handbook provides a clear explanation of how to organize and moderate focus groups and interpret the data from participants. This book contains information on how to select good moderators and avoid common mistakes when designing and conducting focus groups.

Head, A. Design Wise: A Guide for Evaluating the Interface Design of Information Resources. Cyberage Books: Medford, NJ, 1999.

Alison Head's Design Wise is a short (196 pages), but useful and entertaining primer for readers who have to purchase, evaluate, or design interactive media. Part 1 of this book is an introduction to user interface design and evaluation. Part 2 analyzes CD-ROMs, Web sites, and online commercial databases. Useful checklists and interviews by notables like Don Norman and Jakob Nielsen are sprinkled through this book.

Heath, C. and Luff, Paul. Technology in Action. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, UK, 2000. ISBN: 0-521056869-2.

This book describes a series of video-based field studies of complex systems like the London Underground, rail, medical, and architecture systems. Most of the studies are based on "conversational analysis" and related ethnomethologies. The book draws on sociology, HCI, cognitive science, and CSCW. If you are interested in contextual inquiry, ethnomethodology, and field research, this book would be apropos.

Heckel, P. The Elements of Friendly Software Design. Sybex: Alameda, CA, 1991. (Out of print).

Heckel describes principles for designing "friendly" software and illustrates the principles with detailed case studies.

Helander, M. (Ed.) Handbook of Human-Computer Interaction. North-Holland: Amsterdam, 1988.

This is a compendium of papers on HCI topics from the late 1980s. Some papers are classics (e.g., the Whiteside, et al. paper on contextual methods and usability metrics and Gould's paper on designing usable systems).

Helander, M. G., Landauer, T. K., and Prabhu, P. V. (Eds.) Handbook of Human-Computer Interaction Second Edition. North-Holland: Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 1997.

The Handbook of Human-Computer Interaction, Second Edition, is an update of the 1988 version listed in this bibliography. This massive compendium (1582) pages has nine sections:

1. Issues, Theories, Models, and Methods in HCI 2. Design and Development of Software Systems 3. User Interface Design


4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

Evaluation of HCI Individual Differences and Training Multimedia, Video, and Voice Programming, Intelligent Interface Design, and Knowledge-Based systems Input Devices and Design of work Stations CSCW and Organization Issues in HCI

The Handbook provides a mixture of practical advice and research on each topic and extensive bibliographies at the end of each chapter.

Johnson, J. GUI Bloopers: Don'ts and Do's for Software Developers and Web Designers. Morgan Kaufmann: San Francisco, CA 2000.

Jeff Johnson book is a compendium of common GUI mistakes (the ones that we see on every project). It is filled with wisdom and detailed descriptions of problems and solutions. This book is useful for usability specialists, UI designers, and GUI programmers.

Jordan, P. W. Designing Pleasurable Products: An Introduction to the New Human Factors. Taylor & Francis, London, UK, 2000. ISBN: 0-748-40844-4.

Jordan describes how there are three levels of human needs (relative to consumer products): functionality, usability, and pleasure. The first two levels are the primary focus of most product teams. Jordan argues that we must go beyond usability and design pleasurable products. He defines four pleasures: physio-pleasure, socio-pleasure, psycho-pleasure, and ideo-pleasure. After describing these pleasures, Jordan gives some examples of pleasurable products and methods for designing pleasurable products.

Kulak, d. and Guiney, E. Use Cases: Requirements in Context. ACM Press: New York, NY, 2000. ISBN: 0-201-65767-8.

If you are involved in the creation of use cases or the definition of product requirements, this book would be useful. The book starts out with a discussion of the issues involved in gathering requirements (conducting user interviews, making lists, doing prototypes) then it moves to a thorough description of use cases and UML. The book then describes a "use case-driven approach to requirements gathering". The book walks through several case studies and has a chapter called "classic mistakes" which summarizes mistakes and pitfalls in creating use cases and defining requirements. The book notes that the concept of a use case is easy to understand, but the process of using uses cases in the development process is not. This is a practical book with clear prose, good advice and many examples.

Lansdale, M. W. and Ormerod, T. C. Understanding Interfaces: A Handbook of Human-Computer Dialogue. Academic Press: London, UK, 1994. (Out of print). Landauer, T. K. The Trouble with Computers: Usefulness, Usability, and Productivity. The MIT Press: Cambridge, MA, 1995. ISBN: 0262621088.

Landauer's book is a detailed study of why computers have not contributed to overall productivity. Landauer provides great detail on productivity and then focuses on the problems of usefulness and usability. This book provides many case histories of problems with computers. Landauer than explains how user-centered design can have an enormous impact on productivity. This book never seemed to get much attention, possibly because it has a lot of history about productivity


before it gets to information that UCD practitioners would find useful, like a great table on the quantitative impact of UCD methods on the usability of products

Macaulay, L. Human-Computer Interaction for Software Designers. International Thomson Computer Press, London, UK, 1995.

Macaulay's book is written for software engineers who might be designing their first user interface. The book provides a step-by-step description of various design techniques and follows this description with a case study.

Preece, J., Rogers, Y., Sharp, H., Benyon, D., Holland, S. and Carey, T. HumanComputer Interaction. Addison-Wesley: Reading, MA, 1994.

This is a textbook that covers many aspects of HCI. The book opens with a discussion of the goals of HCI work and goes on to cover topics in human cognition, technology, interaction design, and evaluation.

Raskin, J. The Humane Interface: New Directions for Designing Interactive Systems. Addison-Wesley: Reading, MA, 2000. ISBN: 021379376.

Raskin, the "creator of the Apple Macintosh project, pushes hard for a design process that is based on cognitive psychology (GOMS) and quantitative measures and presents a number of design for breaking out of the current GUI paradigm. There are a lot of good design principles, but they are spread throughout the book in haphazard fashion. I would have found a list of the principles useful. Raskin's style is to lecture in this book and some may not like this approach.

Redmond-Pyle, D. and Moore, A. Graphical User Interface Design and Evaluation (GUIDE): A Practical Process. Prentice Hall: London, UK, 1995. ISBN: 013315193X.

The GUIDE process is a systematic and practical approach to user interface design. The authors have taken techniques like usability engineering, scenarios, and task analysis, and combined them into a development process. The primary audience for this book is an analyst or user interface designer who is not a human factors specialist.

Reilly, J. P. Rapid Prototyping: Moving to Business-centric Development. Thomson Computer Press: Boston, MA, 1996. (Out of print).

Reilly provides a framework for integrating the analysis of business functions, workflow, visual design, and product development into a rapid application prototyping (RAP) process. There is significant focus on defining technical requirements, business process modeling, and evolutionary prototyping. This book seems focused toward designers working on very large systems like those used in manufacturing, retail sales, or the financial departments of large companies.

Roberts, D., Berry, D., Isensee, S. and Mullaly, J. Designing for the User with OVID: Bridging User Interface Design and Software Engineering. Macmillan Technical Publishing: Indianapolis, IN, 1998.

OVID stands for Object, View, and Interaction Design. This book is an interface methodology that attempts to bring some structure to the often chaotic design process. The book makes the point that you can do a good job at user and task analysis, but still have a poor product if the


implementation is flawed. The authors combine notation and modeling techniques used by successful coders (UML, state diagrams, and class models) with the methods of user interface designers. This book includes a case study and exercises.

Rudisill, M., Lewis, C., Polson, P. B., and McKay, T. (Eds.) Human-Computer Interface Design: Success Stories, Emerging Methods, and Real-World Design. Morgan Kaufmann: San Francisco, CA, 1996.

Part I of the book focuses on success cases. Chapter 1 describes how a focus on user-centered design resulted in a dramatic increase of revenues in a database product. Part II focuses on emerging methods (from the mid 1990s). Part III has articles on real-world problems with bring interface design methods into the development process.

Schrage, Michael. Serious Play: How the World's Best Companies Simulate to Innovate. Harvard Business School Press: Boston, MA, 2000. ISBN: 0-87584-814-1.

Michael Schrage, a research associate at the MIT Media Lab and a columnist for Fortune magazine, has written a book on the importance of prototyping for innovation. His main argument is that "the future of prototyping is the future of innovation." The book is a bit heavy on business philosophy (it was published by the Harvard Business School Press), but it describes a range of prototyping techniques and poses key questions surrounding the nature of prototyping like "What is this model for?" and "Who stands to lose if a useful prototype or simulation is created?"

Schriver, K. A. Dynamics in Document Design: Creating Text for Readers. Wiley: New York, NY, 1997.

Schrivers' book describes how document design has evolved, discusses how users react to different facets of documents (for example typography, illustrations, and examples). The book uses case studies extensively and draws on research from rhetoric, design, writing and cognitive science. Schriver's work highlights how interactions among different variables (for example, justification, word spacing, and leading) affect readability and interpretation and how designers should be cautious about basing decisions on "main effects".

Thomas, R. C. Long Term Human-Computer Interaction: An Exploratory Perspective. Springer-Verlag: London, UK, 1998.

This book focuses on research into long-term computer use, a topic seldom covered in most basic books on usability. However, it is quite academic and probably most useful for anyone who might be planning longitudinal research.

Tognazzini, B. Tog on Software Design. Addison-Wesley: Reading, MA, 1996.

Tognazzini's book focuses on the higher levels of design. He covers topics ranging from trends in computing to the true meaning of quality. The book is full of useful data and anecdotes for those aiming for the next generation of computing. This book is highly recommended.

Van Harmelen, M. (Ed.). Object Modeling and User Interface Design: Designing Interactive Systems. Addison-Wesley: Boston, NY, 2001.

There are four sections to this book: participatory design, scenario- and task-based design, use case based design, and user-centered design.


Vicente, K. J. Cognitive Work Analysis: Toward Safe, Productive, and Healthy Computer-Based Work. Lawrence Erlbaum: Mahwah, N.J. 1999. ISBN: 0-8058-2396-4

The goal of this book is to "help designers of complex sociotechnical systems create computerbased information support that helps workers adapt to the unexpected and changing demands of their jobs" (p. xiv). This book is based on the work of Jens Rasmussen and his colleagues in Denmark over the last 3 decades. The book discusses methods that are similar to contextual inquiry and design, but it does so in a very complex way. This might be a good resource for anyone doing serious research on task analysis or work modeling, but it is not a book for busy practitioners.

Wiegers, K. E. Software Requirements: Practical Techniques for Gathering and Managing Requirements Throughout the Product Development Cycle. Microsoft Press: Redmond, WA, 1999.

Wiegers's book covers definitions of requirements, the requirements engineering process, and the management of software requirements. This book is recommended for anyone who is involved in the requirements process.

Winograd, T. (Ed.) Bringing Design to Software. ACM Press: New York, NY, 1996. ISBN: 0201854910.

This is a collection of essays that try to answer the questions "What is design?" and "What it is that designers do as a product goes from idea to reality?"

Zetie, C. Practical User Interface Design: Making GUIs Work. McGraw-Hill: London, UK, 1995. (Out of print).

Zetie has some practical tips for designing corporate applications that are not found in other books. He discusses some of the sticky issues surrounding GUIs that are front-ends for databases.


Survey and Questionnaire Design and Implementation

Alreck, P. L. and Settle, R. B. The Survey Research Handbook (2nd Edition): Guidelines and Strategies for Conducting a Survey. Irwin Publishing: Chicago, IL, 1995. Dillman, D. A. Mail and Telephone Surveys: The Total Design Method. Wiley: New York, NY, 1978.

Dillman's book is a detailed style guide that will provide usability specialists with clear guidelines (and their rationales) for the construction of mail and telephone questionnaires. If you want to do telephone interviews, buy this version rather than his Second Edition, which deals only with mail, and Internet surveys.

Dillman, D. A. Mail and Internet Surveys: The Total Design Method (Second Edition). Wiley: New York, NY, 2000. ISBN: 0471323543.

This is an update of Dillman's classic 1978 book. If you are going to buy one book that covers a wide range of topics on survey design and implementation, this would be an excellent choice.

Hayes, B. E. Measuring Customer Satisfaction: Survey Design, Use, and Statistical Analysis Methods. (Second Edition). American Society for Quality: Milwaukee, WI, 1998.

If you are developing a product satisfaction survey, this book is a useful reference. The book covers the development of dimensions of satisfaction, reliability and validity, questionnaire construction, sampling methods, and the analysis of satisfaction data. There are examples of satisfaction questionnaires that are useful for developing your own questionnaire.

Lohr, S. L. Sampling: Design and Analysis. Duxbury Press: Pacific Grove, CA, 1999.

This book is a compendium of information on sampling for different types of surveys. This book requires a relatively strong background in statistics and sampling theory.

Salant, Priscilla, A. and Dillman, D. A. How to Conduct Your Own Survey. Wiley: New York, NY, 1994.

Salant and Dillman provide practical advice on: what type of survey to conduct (mail, telephone, or face-to-face), how much a survey will cost, what types of errors are common, how to choose the right questions, how to choose respondents, how to write good questions, and how to implement and report survey results. This book is filled with examples of good and bad questions, sample interview forms, and the do's and don'ts of survey design.


Sudman, S., Bradburn, N. M. Schwarz, N. Thinking About Answers: The Application of Cognitive Processes to Survey Methodology. Jossey-Bass: San Francisco, CA, 1996.

The authors attempt to bring cognitive research to bear on common questions about the design of surveys. This is a useful book to have if you get into debates about the accuracy of recall and the best way to question people about past events or how to phrase questions.

Tourangeau, R., Rips, L. J., and Rasinski, K. The Psychology of Survey Response. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, UK, 2000. ISBN: 0521572460.


New Technologies and Hot Topics in HCI

Bergman, E. (Ed.) Information Appliances and Beyond: Interaction Design for Consumer Products. Morgan Kaufmann: San Francisco, CA, 2000.

This book presents case studies that focus on the differences between commercial PC software and the constrained software of information appliances like the Palm Pilot, mobile phones, and automobile navigation systems. The book is full of practical design guidance and principles that should be useful to anyone designing information appliances.

Dertouzos, M. The Unfinished Revolution: Human-Centered Computers and What They Can Do for Us. Harper Collins: New York, NY, 2001. ISBN 006662067-8.

Dertouzos heads up MIT's Laboratory for Computer Sciences. This book describes how five technologies -- speech understanding, automation, individualized information access, collaboration, and customization ­ will work together to make computing systems simpler.

Druin, A. (Ed.) The Design of Children's Technology. Morgan Kaufmann: San Francisco, CA, 1998.

Allison Druin's book is divided into two sections. The first section deals with usability and the design process for creating children's products. The second section focuses on examples of future technologies. Specific topics include: adapting design methodologies to work with children (for example contextual inquiry), user interface guidelines for children, kids as design informants, and participatory design. The authors are primarily from academia.

Druin, A., and Solomon, C. Designing Multimedia Environments for Children. Wiley: New York, NY, 1996. Gershenfeld, N. When Things Start to Think. Henry Holt: New York, NY, 1999.

This book presents a vision of a world where coffee cups, shoes, toilets, and homes have embedded supercomputers. Gershenfeld describes the technology needed to design shoes that will allow two people to transfer data simply by shaking hands and digital paper that can be reused. The ideas in this book go far beyond the Web into a new world of micro-digital technology that will make current interfaces look slabs of stone.

Johnson, S. Interface Culture: How New Technology Transforms the Way We Create and Communicate. HarperEdge: New York, NY, 1997.

Steven Johnson's book discusses how art, engineering, and culture are intertwined in the design of user interfaces. This book --full of historical references to biblical mnemonics, Memex, bad predictions by famous computer scientists, Shakespeare, and Guttenberg -- describes how interfaces have influenced our culture and communication patterns. There are six main chapters in the book: 1. Bitmapping: An Introduction 2. The Desktop 3. Windows


4. Links 5. Text 6. Agents Sprinkled throughout these chapters are discussions of consistency in UI design, the limitations of hierarchical file systems, the dangers of ceding control of tasks to agents, and the knitting together of disparate chunks of information through frames.

King, T. W. Assistive Technology: Essential Human Factors. Allyn & Bacon: Needham Heights, MA, 1999.

King's book is a good survey of the human factors issues of assistive technology. His book covers principles that apply to the design of switches, controls, and monitor screens. The last section of the book discusses why some assistive technologies fail and covers some issues that many HCI books don't, like the impact of aesthetics and durability.

Munro, A. J., Höök, K., and Benyon, D. (Eds.) Social Navigation of Information Space. Springer: London, 1999.

Social Navigation of Information Space is the result of a workshop on how people navigate around real and virtual information spaces. This books presents research and theory on topics that include intelligent agents, computer-supported cooperative work, Web navigation, information retrieval and wearable computers. Some chapters are clear and informative; others lapse into esoteric discussions that will only be of interest to academics (for example, the discussion of "non-discursivity" on page 63).

Norman, D. A. The Invisible Computer: Why Good Products Can Fail, and the Personal Computer is So Complex and Information Appliances are the Solution. The MIT Press: Cambridge, MA, 1998. ISBN: 0262140659. Paciello, M. Web Accessibility for People with Disabilities CMP Books: Lawrence, Kansas, 2000 ISBN 1929629087

Web accessibility is a hot topic in the CHI community. Michael Paciello has pulled together a superb reference book for anyone concerned with accessible Web design. His book examines legal policies and standards, design and testing of accessible sites, and Web accessibility resources.

Picard, R. W. Affective Computing. The MIT Press: Cambridge, MA, 1997.

Affective Computing is a book about how to imbue computers with emotion. The author's thesis is that emotion can have a positive effect on decision-making. This book reviews the literature on theories of emotion and the impact of emotion on decision making. Picard notes that "emoticons", those little faces made of text characters, are already used to help people understand the meaning of text and that new technologies will soon allow computers to express emotion. Picard describes work by Daniel Goleman who wrote the book Emotional Intelligence, Patti Maes, a strong voice for agent technology, Reeves and Nass, authors of the Media Equation, and other prominent psychologists delving into the importance of emotion in humanhuman and human-computer interactions.


Reeves, B. and Nass, C. The Media Equation: How People Treat Computers, Television, and New Media Like Real People and Places. CLSI Publications: Stanford, CA, 1996.

Reeves and Nass are professors of communication at Stanford University. The Media Equation summarizes several years of research on how humans relate to computers, television, and other types of new media. Reeves and Nass present findings that humans treat computers and other media technology as real people and places. Some of their conclusions are that people have natural social responses to computers that people assign traits to computers, and that designers of "new media" could improve ease of use by employing rules for social and physical relationships. One design problem with this book is that it only has an author index. This work, like that described in Picard's Affective Computing is likely to foster some good debate in the CHI community.

Stuart, R. The Design of Virtual Environments. McGraw-Hill: New York, NY, 1996.

The Design of Virtual Environments is broken into three parts. Part 1 focuses on defining requirements for virtual environments. Part 2 discusses how to design virtual systems and covers technologies like position trackers, instrumented gloves and suits, eye tracking, visual displays, and computational requirements. The final part of the book describes how to evaluate virtual environments from usability and system performance perspectives. This book explains the many facets of virtual environment design in lucid prose.

Weinschenk, S. and Barker, D. T. Designing Effective Speech Interfaces. Wiley: New York, NY, 2000.

This book is a speech interface style guide. The first part of the book talks about some general issues with speech interfaces and the second part of the book is a long list of general guidelines. For those new to speech interfaces, this is a good summary of all the issues that must be considered.


Web Design and Usability

Fleming, J., and Koman, R. Web Navigation: Designing the User Experience. O'Reilly & Associates: Sebastopol, CA, 1998.

Web Navigation is a good primer on how to design an efficient and enjoyable Web site. Fleming and Koman focus on user goals (education, entertainment, shopping, forming a virtual community) and how those goals should influence the design of Web sites. The book has many examples and a companion CD.

Fosythe, C., Grose, E., and Ratner, J. (Eds.) Human Factors and Web Development. Lawrence Earlbaum: Mahwah, NJ, 1998.

This book is divided into five sections. The first section deals with the implications of psychological theory for Web design. The second section looks at specific Web user populations, including children, disabled users, and students. Section three examines Web style guidelines and differences between Web and GUI style guidelines. Section four looks at research topics and the last section examines collaboration and visualization on the Web.

Krug, S. Don't Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability. QUE: Indianapolis, IN, 2000. ISBN: 0789723107.

Don't Make Me Think is a compact, but stimulating new book on Web design. When I saw the term "common sense" in the title, I wasn't sure what to expect but as I read chapter after chapter, I found that the author was indeed wise and his advice quite useful.

Nielsen, J. Designing Web Usability: The Practice of Simplicity. New Riders Publishing: Indianapolis, IN, 2000.

Jakob's new book, Designing Web Usability, is packed full of practical information on making Web sites more usable. Jakob supplements his usability and design recommendations with brief tips for web programming. He prose is clear and enjoyable to read, especially when he becomes a bit self-deprecating about some of his own faux pas. To date, this is the best book on Web design, though some find Nielsen's advice too conservative.

Pearrow, M. Web Site Usability Handbook. Charles River Media: Rockland, MA, 2000.

This book is an amalgam of information on usability, UCD, human factors, usability lab setup, Web accessibility, and basic statistics. There is also a CD and examples of consent forms and post-test questionnaires. The writing style is informal. This is a good book for someone wants to get into the field and get a sense of the breadth of topics that are important. The attempt at breadth was laudable, but sometimes the author had too many small chunks of information (especially the short chapters on human factors and statistics). Both human factors and statistics are critical topics, but the coverage was too brief to provide any real benefit.


Rees, M. White, A. White, B . Designing Web Interfaces. Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ, 2001. ISBN: 0-13-085897-8.

Rees and his colleagues have written what they call an "interactive workbook" for Web design. This book covers a wide range of topics ranging from hypertext basics to HCI methods and guidelines. Each chapter has exercises and self-review questions. This book, like the one by Pearrow, tries too hard to cover too many topics. There is some good information, but that information is lacking depth.

Rosenfeld, L. & Morville, P. Information Architecture for the World Wide Web. O'Reilly & Associates: Cambridge, MA, 1998.

Rosenfeld and Morville have compiled a practical guide for designing usable Web architectures. The book begins with a "consumer sensitivity boot camp", and then goes into detailed and quite readable discussions about organizing information, designing usable navigation systems, labeling systems for Web sites, and searching. There is a good chapter on conceptual design.

Sano, D. Designing Large-Scale Web Sites: A Visual Design Methodology. Wiley: New York, NY, 1996.

Sano provides a broad review of topics related to the design of web sites. He describes how to prepare for a web design project, how to build the framework for a web site, and how to apply principles of good visual design and navigation. This is a useful book for those getting into web site design.

Williams, R. and Tollett, J. The Non-Designer's Web Book: An Easy Guide to Creating, Designing, and Posting Your Own Web Site. Peachpit Press: Berkeley, CA, 1998.

This book is a primer on Web design. Topics include: how Web design differs from print design, basic design principles, navigation principles, typography, color, and how to recognize good and bad design.



Del Galdo, E. M. and Nielsen, J. (Eds.) International User Interfaces. Wiley: New York, NY, 1996.

Del Galdo and Nielsen's book is a collection of chapters on topics dealing with usability engineering, culture and design, international differences in software user training, case studies on international user interface design, and the design of multilingual documents. Examples of Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, and Europeans designs are shown.

Fernandes, T. Global Interface Design: A Guide to Designing International User Interfaces. AP Professional: Boston, MA, 1995.

Fernandes' book is a good general reference for GUI designers. His book has sections on visual design, international formats, cultural issues, symbols and taboos, and cultural aesthetics. This book has examples of good and bad international GUI designs.

Hoft, N. L. International Technical Communication: How to Export Information About High Technology. Wiley: New York, NY, 1995.

Hoft provides a comprehensive sourcebook on the issues associated with the design of international technical communications. She covers topics ranging from the management of internationalization groups to the criteria for selecting good translators.

Luong, T. V., Lok, J.S. H., Taylor, D. J. and Driscoll, K. Internationalization: Developing Software for Global Markets. Wiley: New York, NY, 1995.

Luong and his colleagues have compiled a detailed set of the rules that developers of international software need to know. The book is clearly written, even when it describes technical programming issues. The one drawback that I found was a lack of graphics - the book is heavy on text and light on graphics.

Nielsen, J. (Ed.) Designing User Interfaces for International Use. Elsevier: Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 1990.


Human Factors, Cognition, and Statistics

Ashcraft, M. H. Fundamentals of Cognition. Addison-Wesley: New York, NY, 1998.

Mark Ashcraft's book on cognition is both readable and comprehensive. You get detailed information on perception, memory, language acquisition and comprehension, and thinking and reasoning. This book is an excellent reference for the usability specialist who wants to understand more about memory and that the much cited (and not well understood) article on the "magic number 7".

Coe, M. Human Factors for Technical Communicators. Wiley: New York, NY, 1996.

Coe's book provides technical communicators with clear explanations of the impact of human factors on technical communication. The book is a good introduction to human factors, but surprisingly, it does not really provide much that is useful for practitioners.

Ericsson, K. A. and Simon, H. A. Protocol Analysis: Verbal Reports as Data (Revised Edition). The MIT Press: Cambridge, MA, 1993.

Ericsson and Simon have compiled a massive amount of research on thinking aloud methods. This book discusses theory and empirical data on verbal protocols from psychology, education, and cognitive science. The validity, predictability, and completeness of verbal reports are reviewed. This book would be good background reading for anyone who wants to understand the use of verbal protocols in research or who may want to compare the thinking aloud methods used by many practitioners with the more stringent verbal protocol procedures used by researchers.

Hancock, P. A. (Ed.). Human Performance and Ergonomics. Academic Press: San Diego, CA, 1999. ISBN: 0-12-322735-6.

Human Performance and Ergonomics has chapters on the discipline of engineering psychology and ergonomics, cognition in HCI, human engineering and quality of life, applied decision-making, communication aids for people with hearing loss, developing and evaluating conversational agents, multi-operator systems, and scaling problems in the design of work spaces for human use. Each chapter has a detailed bibliography (which I've found useful for locating recent research in HCI).

Norman, K. L. The Psychology of Menu Selection: Designing Cognitive Control at the Human/Computer Interface. Ablex: Norwood, NJ, 1991. (Hard to Find)

Norman's book is a compendium on menu research before 1991. He covers types of menus, cognitive issues in menu selection, formatting and phrasing in menus, learning and training, depth versus breadth, search behavior, prototyping menus, and guidelines for good menu designs. While the book is a bit dated, there is still much useful Information on common questions such as: How long should a menu be? How do I organize menus? How can I test menu designs?


Perlman, G., Green, G. K., and Wogalter, M. S. Human Factors Perspectives on Human-Computer Interaction: Selections from Proceedings of Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meetings: 1983-1994. Human Factors and Ergonomics Society: Santa Monica, CA, 1995. ISBN: 0-945289-05-7.

These articles include some classic papers on methods, guidelines, hardware human factors, accessibility, and usability. Authors include Tom Tullis, Dennis Wixon, Randolph Bias, Gary Perlman, and Robert Williges. There is a 1983 paper by Betsy Comstock that describes what is probably the first documented use of the co-participation method where two participants work together. You can order this book from the HFES at

Salvendy, G. (Ed.). Handbook of Human Factors and Ergonomics (Second Edition). Wiley New York, NY, 1997. ISBN 0-471-11690-4

This is a thick, expensive, and useful handbook. The book covers human factors fundamentals, job design, equipment and workplace design, health and safety, performance modeling, evaluation (including a chapter by Jakob Nielsen on Usability Testing), and HCI.

Sanders, M. S. and McCormick, E. J. Human Factors in Engineering and Design (7th Ed.). McGraw-Hill, NH, 1993.

This is a classic human factors textbook that explains human input and output capabilities. A careful reading of this book can provide usability specialists with research to support design decisions.

Smith, W. J. ISO and ANSI Ergonomic Standards for Computer Products: A Guide to Implementation and Compliance. Prentice Hall: Upper Saddle River, NJ, 1996. Wickens, C. D., Gordon, S. E., and Liu, Y. An Introduction to Human Factors Engineering. Addison-Wesley (Longman Imprint): New York, NY, 1998.

There is the most recent major textbook on Human Factors Engineering and is a good reference for general human factors topics. There is a chapter on basic HCI, but the real value comes from chapters on vision, cognition, decision-making, display and control principles (some of the basic research here on memory, layout, compatibility, labeling, and alerting is quite relevant to software design and usability). There are also some good review chapters on stress and workload, human error, and selection and training (EPSS, adaptive training, and performance support are discussed).


Color, Icons, Perception, Text, Visualization, and Graphic Design

Albers, J. Interaction of Color. Yale University Press: New Haven, CT, 1975.

Albers' 80-page book describes an experiential way of studying how colors interact with other colors. Albers' aim is to develop "... through experience ­ by trial and error ­ an eye for color". The constant theme throughout the book is the relativity of color. A caution ­ this book is meant to be part of an experiential course so just reading it without engaging in the color exercises may not yield deep insight into color relatively.

Card, S. K. Mackinlay, J. and Shneiderman, B. (Eds.) Readings in Information Visualization: Using Vision to Think. Morgan Kaufrmann: San Francisco, CA, 1999. ISBN 1-55860-533-9

This thick book pulls together classic and recent articles on a wide variety of visualization techniques.

Carroll, J. M. The Nurnberg Funnel: Designing Minimalist Instruction for Practical Computer Skill. MIT Press: Cambridge, MA, 1990.

Carroll's book summarizes work done at IBM on minimalist manuals - documentation that is pared down to the essentials.

Carroll, J. M. (Ed.) Minimalism Beyond the Nurnberg Funnel. MIT Press: Cambridge, MA, 1998.

Minimalism Beyond the Nurnberg Funnel contains chapters by prominent researchers and practitioners of minimalism. This book was the result of an STC sponsored workshop on Minimalism held in 1995. This book reviews the basic principles of minimalism and describes the impact of the minimalist philosophy on documentation over the last 15 years or so. Case studies describe the costs and rewards of minimalist documentation.

Cleveland, W. S. The Elements of Graphing Data (Revised Edition). Hobart Press: Summit, NJ, 1994.

Cleveland's book describes a wide variety of graphical techniques for visualizing data. He provides principles for creating effective graphs, a detailed analysis of graphical methods (for example, scatter plots, dot plots, and time series), and factors that affect how viewers will perceive graphical data. Anyone involved in devising ways to present large amounts of technical data to users would benefit from this book.


Frascara, J. User-Centered Graphic Design. Taylor & Francis: London, UK, 1997.

This small book (146 pages) focuses on how visual design can affect attitudes and behavior. One case study deals with visual communication design impacts traffic safety. A common theme through the books is that designers have ethical and social responsibilities. A chapter on design methods deals with issues and limitations of semiotics, data collection methods, and data validity.

Harris, R. L. Information Graphics: A Comprehensive Illustrated Reference ­ Visual Tools for Analyzing, Managing, and Communicating. Management Graphics: Atlanta, GA, 1996.

This book is a veritable encyclopedia of information graphics ­ charts, maps, graphs, diagrams, and tables (over 4000 according to the book cover). Each entry describes the purpose of the information graphic and guidelines for drawing and using the graphic. If you want to know more about jittering, flow maps, stem and leaf charts, or patch graphs, buy the book!

Horton, W. Illustrating Computer Documentation: The Art of Presenting Information Graphically on Paper and Online. Wiley: New York, NY, 1992.

Horton presents detailed guidelines on the appropriate use of graphics for computer documentation.

Horton, W. The Icon Book: Visual Symbols for Computer Systems and Documentation. Wiley: New York, NY, 1994.

Everything you ever wanted to know about icon design. The Icon Book describes the process for designing icons, provides guidelines for icon design, and gives advice on how to design for international audiences. There is one version of the book that includes a disk with a set of 500 icons. Small companies that can't afford graphic designers might find this set of icons useful as a starting point for design.

Horton, W. Designing and Writing Online Documentation. Wiley: New York, NY, 1994. Howlett, V. Visual Interface Design for Windows. Wiley: New York, NY, 1996.

Virgina Howlett's book provides an excellent grounding in a wide range of visual design principles. The book is lavishly illustrated and deals with the design of games, consumer products, and commercial products. This is a good companion to Mullet and Sano' book Designing Visual Interfaces.

Jackson, R., MacDonald, L. and Freeman, K. Computer Generated Color: A Practical Guide to Presentation and Display. Wiley: New York, NY, 1994. Liungman, C. G. Dictionary of Symbols. ABC-CLIO, Inc: Santa Barbara, CA, 1991. Marcus, A. Graphic Design for Electronic Documents and User Interfaces, ACM Press: New York, 1991.


Mullet, K. and Sano, D. Designing Visual Interfaces: Communication Oriented Techniques. SunSoft Press: Mountain View, CA, 1995.

Mullet and Sano's book provides clear examples of some of the elusive concepts of visual layout and design of GUIs. There are good descriptions of design concepts like unity, scale, proportion, grouping, balance, and cohesiveness. The book is heavily illustrated with good and bad visual designs. This is the best book around for understand the general principles of visual design.

Tufte, E. R. The Visual Display of Quantitative Information. Graphics Press: Chesire, CT, 1983.

This is a classic book on the minimalist approach to presenting quantitative information. Tufte provides a language for discussing statistical graphics and suggests many techniques for refining graphics and making them more usable. This is the most useful of the three Tufte books for user interface designers.

Tufte, E. R. Envisioning Information. Graphics Press: Chesire, CT, 1990.

Envisioning Information is a guide to presenting multi-dimensional data in two dimensions. This is a beautiful book, but not quite as useful as his 1983 book.

Tufte, E. R. Visual Explanations: Images and Quantities, Evidence and Narrative. Graphics Press: Cheshire, CT, 1997.

In his third book on graphical design, Tufte focuses on how to present data about "motion, process, mechanism, cause and effect." Tufte notes that visual explanations are often used to make critical decisions. Tufte uses some provocative case studies like the Space Shuttle Challenger hearings and esoteric examples like instructions for magic tricks to illustrate some of the problems of visual explanation. Tufte's work is beautiful, but it takes some work to draw out how his ideas can be applied in the day-to-day bustle that confronts most user interface designers. His first book, The Visual Display of Quantitative Information, has concepts (for example, chartjunk) that were much easier to assimilate and apply.

Wainer, H. Visual Revelations: Graphical Tales of Fate and Deception from Napoleon Bonaparte to Ross Perot. Lawrence Earlbaum: New York, NY, 2000. ISBN: 0805838783.

Wainer's book is a good companion to Ed Tufte's three books on the visual design of information display's. Wainer provides a short history of graphical data presentation and describes how graphic representations can highlight subtle aspects of data or distort data in ways that manipulate the viewer's perception. The final four chapters in the book provide guidelines for improving graphical presentations. The last chapter in the book is "Making Readable Overhead Displays", a very practical topic.


Ware, C. Information Visualization: Perception for Design. Morgan Kaufmann: San Francisco, CA, 2000.

Ware does a masterful job describing the mechanisms of attention, perception, and sensory physiology. Complex topics like chromaticity coordinates, gestalt principles, and texture coding are explained clearly without sacrificing rigor. This book explains many of the principles that are behind user interface guidelines like "don't use red and blue together" and "don't rely solely on color coding".

Wildbur, P. and Burke, M. Information Graphics: Innovative Solutions in Contemporary Design. Thames and Hudson: London, UK, 1998.

This lavishly illustrated book presents case studies of the design of software, signage, signaling systems, air traffic control systems, and multimedia kiosks. The book is divided into sections (color coded) entitled: Informing the Traveler, Explaining How Things Work, Controlling the Input, Interacting with the Screen, Exploring the 3-D Interface, and Mapping the Internal and External Worlds. One drawback of this book is the lack of an index.

Wurman, R. S. Information Anxiety2. QUE: Indianapolis, IN, 2001. ISBN: 0-7897-2410-3.

This is an update to a classic book dealing with information design. In Anxiety2, Wurman expands on concepts of information design and provides some enlightening commentary on how to sift through masses of non-information to get at useful information. His books is fascinating, but its visual style seems somewhat busy at times which I found to be at odds with the main thesis of the book.

Zelanski, P. and Fisher, M. P. Design Principles and Problems (2nd Edition). Harcourt Brace College Publishers: Fort Worth, TX.

This goal of this book is to enlighten readers to universal principles of visual design. The book has chapters on the awareness of design, unifying principles of design, the use of lines, textures, color, shape, and space. Each chapter has "studio problems" for reinforcing particular visual design principles.


Project Management, Ethics, and Politics

Berleur, J. and Brunnstein, K. (Eds.) Ethics of Computing; Codes, Spaces for Discussion and Law. Chapman & Hall, 1997.

This book was discussed in the November 1997 SIGCHI Bulletin. The book compares 30 different codes of ethics.

Bowyer, K. W. (Ed.) Ethics and Computing Living Responsibly in a Computerized World (Second Edition). IEEE Press: Piscataway, NJ, 2001.

This book is a compendium of articles on a wide range of ethical issues.

Johnson, D. G. and H. Nissenbaum. Computers, Ethics, and Social Values. Prentice-Hall: 1995. Gilb, T. Principles of Software Engineering Management. Addison-Wesley: Reading, MA. 1988.

Not many usability engineers are aware that the concept of a usability specification was derived from Gilb's work on attribute specification. This book summarizes work by Gilb and others that lead to the major tenets of usability engineering (evolutionary delivery, and solution evaluation).

Johnson, D. G. and H. Nissenbaum. Computers, Ethics, and Social Values. Prentice-Hall: 1995. Pande, P. S., Neuman, R. P., and Cavanagh, R. R. The Six Sigma Way: How GE, Motorola, and Other Top Companies are Honing Their Performance. McGraw-Hill: New York, NY, 2000. ISBN: 0071358064,

An entertaining book which describes the Six Sigma process. Our goal is should be to improve our products and processes. I didn't expect to enjoy reading this book, but it had a wealth of ideas that could be applied to user-centered design, for example, Chapter 13 describes methods for defining customer requirements (a process that not enough of us are involved with). The book has some dry moments, but is generally well written with entertaining case studies. Not your typical book for UCD or usability practitioner, but a good book for new ideas that might be useful.

Trenner, L. and Bawa, J. (Eds.) The Politics of Usability: A Practical Guide to Designing Usable Systems in Industry. Springer-Verlag: London, UK, 1998.

This short paperback has excellent advice for anyone who is trying to establish a usability presence. Chapter topics include: making a business case for usability, overcoming inertia in large organizations, integrating usability into system development, and cultivating an effective client relationship. Each chapter ends with a list of major lessons learned. Newcomers to the field can gain some savvy from this book. Experienced practitioners may find some new methods or political ideas that will make their work easier.


Online Communities, Psychology and Sociology of the Internet

Preece, J. Online Communities: Designing Usability, Supporting Sociability. Wiley: Chichester, UK, 2000. ISBN: 0471805998.

Jenny's book pulls together research from psychology, HCI, sociology, and other disciplines that describes how to create, nurture, and sustain online communities. Online Communities is replete with case studies, concrete examples, research summaries, and practical suggestions. Jenny notes that the usability of tools is important, but equally important is the concept of building sociability into an online community. Jenny provides a checklist of usability and sociability heuristics on page 291 that should be considered in the design of online communities. These heuristics deal with the following questions: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Why should I join this community? How do I join or leave the community? What are the rules? How do I read and send messages? Can I do what I want easily? Is the community safe? Can I express myself as I wish? Why should I come back?

Anyone trying to build an online [profit or non-profit) community should read this book. Jenny Preece has done a superb job melding research from different disciplines and providing theoretical foundations and practical advice.

Rheingold, H. The Virtual Community: Homesteading on the Electronic Frontier (Revised Edition). The MIT Press: Cambridge, MA, 2000. ISBN: 0262681218. Sproull, L. and Kiesler, S. Connections: New Ways of Working in the Networked Organization. The MIT Press: Cambridge, MA, 1991. ISBN: 0262691582.


E-Commerce Books on Branding, Design, and Sales Success

Peppers, D. and Rogers, M. The One to One Future: Building Relationships One Customer at a Time. Doubleday: New York, NY, 1996. ISBN: 0-385-485662.

This book is often cited in discussions about personalization. It discusses issues of mass customization and share of customer (as opposed to market share). The book makes distinctions between mass marketing and 1:1 marketing. For example, mass marketing is adversarial whereas 1:1 marketing is collaborative. The first edition of the book was written in 1993 before Web commerce took off, but many of the lessons in the book can be applied to e-commerce or face-to-face transactions.

Underhill, P. Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping. Simon & Schuster: New York, NY, 1999. ISBN: 0-684-84913-5.

Underhill describes how his team observes shoppers and makes conclusions about what factors affect buying decisions. A theme throughout the book is that tedious observations can yield almost miraculous inferences about what affects buying decisions.



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