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

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

Trends in Future Web Designs
Mary Czerwinski
Microsoft Research
1
New Web Browsers and Visualization Techniques
As computing bandwidth increases and the graphics capabilities of consumer hardware become more sophisticated, the trend on the World Wide Web is toward leveraging these technical shifts. In this paper, I will describe a sampling of the new browser designs that have been emerging with greater frequency over the last several months. While many of these browsers and visualization techniques were designed for quite specific tasks, in this article I am interested in browsers that were specifically designed to help organize and make sense of large collections of Web pages, files, or documents available on the Web. Target tasks for this analysis included:
Finding a Web document you know exists, and that you have visited before (targeted revisitation)
Finding a Web document you know exists, but that you've never seen before (targeted search)
Finding a Web document and most of the pages related to it on a particular topic (comprehensive browsing)
Finding a Web document on a topic that is "close enough" to the subject at hand (satisficing during browsing)
The dimensions we are using for evaluation came from three different aspects of research in our lab:
Our on-going usability analysis of Web browsers (e.g, Czerwinski & Larson 1997).
Literature review of important browser usage characteristics, (e.g., Abrams & Baecker 1997; Tauscher& Greenberg 1997)
Cross-product comparison and historical tracking

Targeted revisitation is the ability to go back to a page you have previously visited. This is the ability for which the History and the Favorites features in most Web browsers were designed. PadPrints (Hightower et al. 1998) has been shown empirically to do a superior job of providing the user with an easy way to return to a previously visited page. PadPrints works by creating a visual tree of all the web pages that the user has previously visited. As the user moves around

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