I don't know if you have the same problem in the US, but in the UK
"usability" is about as sellable as "quality assurance". Both are viewed as
things that it would be nice to have, if only there was the time and/or
money. "User-centerd design" does not fair much better.
I think if the HCI/UI community want to steal some of the serious attention
back from all of the technology-centred development that is going on, then
we need something stronger!
I like "Interaction Design", but it is already being used in a slightly
vague way. However, if enough of us start to use the term to mean the same
thing we may be able to give it better definition (if you will excuse the
Tel +44 (1235) 522859
Fax +44 (1235) 554449
From: Cleary, Teresa [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
Sent: 17 June 1999 15:49
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: What's in a Name?
My group is looking for a new name. "Usability" just doesn't seem to
adequately convey what we do. We are involved in defining user models (via
Contextual Inquiry), designing UIs (using Contextual Design, paper
prototyping, storyboarding, etc.), as well as usability testing. I'm
thinking of something like "User-Centered Design and Analysis". It's long,
but more informative (IMHO) than "usability". (I could go on and on about
the philosophy of naming, but I'll leave that to another discussion!).
I'm interested in hearing your thoughts on the topic of naming,
specifically, what does your group do, and what are you called?
Thanks in advance for your help!
Spectrum (a Cabletron company)