Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

It’s All In Your Head - The Effect Of Metaphor On Web Navigation

Date:
June 19, 2008
Source:
University of Leicester
Summary:
In the internet world of sites, pages, lounges and whatever else is out there, most of us have found ourselves 'lost in hyperspace', a frustrating experience of having lost track of where we are, where we're going, or where to find what we're looking for.

In the internet world of sites, pages, lounges and whatever else is out there, most of us have found ourselves 'lost in hyperspace', a frustrating experience of having lost track of where we are, where we're going, or where to find what we're looking for.

However, hope is at hand, through a recent study by a PhD Student at the University of Leicester, Kine Dorum,

Based on the notion that people create images or maps in their heads to represent the world around them, designers and developers often attempt to help people find their way by working on the principle that virtual environments should be made to look and feel as similar to the real world as possible. One example is the computer desktop with its files, folders, and 'trash can'.

Kine Dorum’s work suggests that how things look may not necessarily be an all-important factor when designing information spaces.

Comparing three identical-looking websites based on different real-world scenarios, the study shows that people tend to rely on prior knowledge of a space when moving around, rather than how realistic the spatial layout is.

Kine explained: “In other words, we don't need an image of a door presented on the screen in order to see a door in our mind, and a button on a website does not necessarily need to look like a real button.

“The effect of familiarity is so strong that it can have a greater impact than other factors that have previously been found to affect people's ability to use computer environments, such as individual thinking styles and a person's ability to orient themselves in space.”

So, while tapping into people's knowledge about the real world, these findings could indicate that there should be fewer constraints on the visual design of computer environments than are currently applied.

Through her work as a graphic and web designer Kine came to the field of cognitive psychology with experience of and interest in people’s differing ability to use computer based material. In her PhD project she is making use of psychological theory to test and gain insight into what happens at the interface between people and computers. The goal is to identify a set of key characteristics of both the user and the computer environment, which can be used to predict behaviour and performance, and inform design decisions.

The research is being presented to the public at the University of Leicester on Thursday 26th June. The Festival of Postgraduate Research introduces employers and the public to the next generation of innovators and cutting-edge researchers, and gives postgraduate researchers the opportunity to explain the real world implications of their research to a wide ranging audience.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Leicester. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Leicester. "It’s All In Your Head - The Effect Of Metaphor On Web Navigation." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 June 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080619105140.htm>.
University of Leicester. (2008, June 19). It’s All In Your Head - The Effect Of Metaphor On Web Navigation. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080619105140.htm
University of Leicester. "It’s All In Your Head - The Effect Of Metaphor On Web Navigation." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080619105140.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Computers & Math News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Teen's Phone Ignites Under Her Pillow; How Real Is The Risk?

Teen's Phone Ignites Under Her Pillow; How Real Is The Risk?

Newsy (July 28, 2014) A Texas teen's Samsung phone apparently ignited while she slept, but what was the real problem here? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Google's Next Frontier: The Human Body

Google's Next Frontier: The Human Body

Newsy (July 27, 2014) Google is collecting genetic and molecular information to paint a picture of the perfectly healthy human. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cellphone Unlocking Bill Clears U.S. House, Heads to Obama

Cellphone Unlocking Bill Clears U.S. House, Heads to Obama

Reuters - US Online Video (July 27, 2014) Congress gets rid of pesky law that made it illegal to "unlock" mobile phones without permission, giving consumers the option to use the same phone on a competitor's wireless network. Mana Rabiee reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Congress OKs Unlocking Phones From Carriers

Congress OKs Unlocking Phones From Carriers

Newsy (July 26, 2014) A bill legalizing "unlocking," or untethering a phone from its default wireless carrier, has passed Congress and is expected to be signed into law. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins