Human-Computer Interaction: Ergonomics and User Interfaces - Vol. 1

By Hans-Jörg Bullinger; Jürgen Ziegler | Go to book overview

Task Modelling for Database Interface
Development

Tony Griffiths, Norman W. Paton, Carole A. Goble, Adrian J. West
Department of Computer Science,
University of Manchester, Oxford Road,
Manchester M13 9PL, United Kingdom
E-mail: {griffitt, norm, carole, ajw} @cs.man.ac.uk


1
Introduction

Although task modelling serves a pivotal role in the model-based paradigm for developing user interfaces, task models are often simplistic in their view of the modelled domain, and fail to address many of the fundamental processing requirements of real world applications.

The Teallach project is developing a model-based user interface development environment (MB-UIDE) which is primarily concerned with the development of user interfaces to applications built upon object databases, and as such its task modelling component pays particular attention to the information processing and linkage requirements of complex database applications. This paper describes the Teallach approach to modelling the tasks necessary to interact with an object database, and how these tasks can be used to reflect more accurately the often complex information flows between a user interface and its underlying application.


2
The Role of Task Modelling in MB-UIDEs

2.1
Task Model Scope and Semantics

There appear to be two general schools of thought about what a task model is and where it fits into the model-based development life-cycle. One school characterises task modelling as an early, goal oriented, design activity that is subsequently refined in the process of producing an executable prototype ( Markopoulos et al. 1992), and the other school, which describes tasks in terms of "user actions including both motor steps and mental steps when performing

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