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The Computer User as Toolsmith

The Computer User as Toolsmith
The Use, Reuse and Organization of Computer-Based Tools


Part of Cambridge Series on Human-Computer Interaction

  • Date Published: April 1993
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521404303

£ 68.00

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About the Authors
  • Computing environments that furnish a large set of tools (such as editors, mail programs and language processors) are difficult to use, primarily because there is no means of organizing the tools so that they are at hand when needed. Because of the dearth of knowledge of how users behave when issuing commands to general purpose computer systems, user support facilities are ad-hoc designs that do not support natural work habits. The Computer User as Toolsmith, first published in 1993, describes several empirical studies from which the author has developed a computer version of a handyman's workbench that would help users with their online activities. For the practitioner and interface designer, the guidelines and principles offered here are directly applicable to the rational design of new systems and the modernization of old ones. For the researcher and graduate student, the book offers a wealth of analysis and interpretation of data, as well as a survey of research techniques.

    •  A handyman's workbench for computer scientists
    • Useful for the practitioner and interface designer, as well as for the researcher and graduate student
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    Product details

    • Date Published: April 1993
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521404303
    • length: 204 pages
    • dimensions: 262 x 181 x 20 mm
    • weight: 0.67kg
    • contains: 45 b/w illus. 18 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    2. Studying Unix
    3. Using commands in Unix
    4. Techniques for reusing activities
    5. Recurrent systems
    6. Reuse opportunities in Unix Csh - potential and actual
    7. Principles, corroboration and justification
    8. Organizing activities through workspaces
    9. A workspace system: description and issues
    10. Conclusion

  • Author

    Saul Greenberg, University of Calgary

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