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Special Issue of International Journal of Human-Computer Interaction:
HCI Studies in Management Information Systems
Vol. 19, No. 1, 2005

AIS SIGHCI (http://sigs.aisnet.org/sighci/) sponsored and fast-tracked 
expansions of best completed research papers from HCI track at AMCIS 2004 
to this special issue of International Journal of Human-Computer 
Interaction (IJHCI). Papers that successfully underwent the 2-3 rounds of 
review process were published in this special issue.

Guest Editors:
Fiona Fui-Hoon Nah, University of Nebraska, Lincoln
Ping Zhang, Syracuse University
Scott McCoy, College of William and Mary 

Papers in the Special Issue:

1. Visualizing E-Brand Personality: Exploratory Studies on Visual 
Attributes and E-Brand Personalities in Korea (pp. 7-34)
Su-e Park, Dongsung Choi, and Jinwoo Kim 

The brand personality of an online product and service, usually 
represented by a web site, is known as its e-brand personality. In the 
competitive conditions of online markets, e-brand personality is agreed to 
be an important factor in securing distinctive identity; however, few 
studies have suggested how to establish e-brand personality through the 
visual design of web sites. This study explores the feasibility of 
constructing target e-brand personalities for online services by using 
visual attributes. It consists of three consecutive studies. The first 
study identified four major dimensions of e-brand personality on diverse 
web sites. The second study used 52 experimental home pages to identify 
key visual attributes associated with those four personality dimensions. 
The third study explored whether those findings from the second study can 
be applied in constructing websites for online services. The results show 
that two visual attributes, simplicity and cohesion, are closely related 
to a bold personality. Three attributes, contrast, density, and 
regularity, can be used to create a web site that has an analytical 
personality. Contrast, cohesion, density, and regularity are closely 
related to a web site that is perceived to have a friendly personality. 
Regularity and balance were expected to be related to the sophisticated 
personality dimension, but no such relation was identified in the third 
study. The article concludes with a discussion of implications, 
limitations, and future research directions. 

2. The Enhanced Restricted Focus Viewer (pp. 35-54)
Peter Tarasewich, Marc Pomplun, Stephanie Fillion, and Daniel Broberg 

The Enhanced Restricted Focus Viewer (ERFV) is a unique software tool for 
tracking the visual attention of users in hyperlinked environments such as 
Web sites. The software collects data such as mouse clicks along with the 
path of the user’s visual attention as they browse a site. Unlike 
traditional eye-tracking procedures, the ERFV requires no hardware to 
operate other than a personal computer. In addition to cost and time 
savings, the ERFV also allows the administration of usability testing to 
groups of subjects simultaneously. A laboratory test comparing the ERFV to 
a hardware-based eye-tracking system showed that the two methods compare 
favorably in terms of how well they track a user’s visual attention. The 
usefulness of the ERFV as a usability testing tool was demonstrated 
through an experiment that evaluated two Web sites that were equivalent in 
content but differed in terms of design. While several open issues 
concerning the ERFV still remain, some of these issues are being addressed 
through ongoing research efforts. 

3. Issues in Building Multi-User Interfaces (pp. 55-74)
V. Srinivasan Rao, Wai-Lan Luk, and John Warren 

The proliferation of interest in collaborative computer applications in 
the past decade has resulted in a corresponding increase in the interest 
in multi-user interfaces. The current research seeks to contribute to an 
understanding of the process of developing user models for group 
interaction, and to the design and implementation of multi-user interfaces 
based on the model. We use group ranking as an exemplar task. User 
requirements were identified, by observing groups perform the ranking task 
in a non-computer environment. A design was proposed based on the 
identified requirements and a prototype implemented. Feedback from 
informal user evaluation of the implemented interface is reported. 
Insights on the methodology are discussed. 

4. Online Consumer Trust and Live Help Interfaces: The Effects of 
Text-to-Speech Voice and 3D Avatars (pp. 75-94)
Lingyun Qiu and Izak Benbasat 

With the increasing prevalence of online shopping, many companies have 
begun to provide Live Help functions, through instant messaging or text 
chatting, on their websites to facilitate interactions between online 
consumers and customer service representatives (CSRs). The continuing 
reliance of these functions on text-based communication limits non-verbal 
communication with consumers and the social contexts for the information 
conveyed, but with the help of emerging multimedia technologies, companies 
can now use computer-generated voice and humanoid avatars to embody CSRs, 
thus enriching the interactive experiences of their customers. In this 
study, a laboratory experiment was conducted to empirically test the 
effects of Text-To-Speech (TTS) voice and 3D avatars on consumer trust 
towards CSRs. TTS voice was implemented to deliver answers aloud. A 3D 
avatar served as the humanoid representation of a CSR. The results 
demonstrate that the presence of TTS voice significantly increases 
consumers’ cognitive and emotional trust toward the CSR. These findings 
offer practitioners guidelines to improve the interface design of real 
time human-to-human communications for e-commerce websites. 

5. An Empirical Examination of the Effects of Web Personalization at 
Different Stages of Decision-Making (pp. 95-112)
Shuk Ying Ho and Kar Yan Tam 

Personalization agents are incorporated in many websites to tailor content 
and interfaces for individual users. But in contrast to the proliferation 
of personalized web services worldwide, empirical research on the effects 
of web personalization is scant. How does exposure to personalized offers 
affect subsequent product consideration and choice outcome? Drawing on 
literature in human computer interaction (HCI) and user behavior, this 
research examines the effect of three major elements of web 
personalization strategies on users’ information processing through 
different decision-making stages: personalized content quality, feature 
overlapping among alternatives, and personalized message framing. These 
elements can be manipulated by a firm in implementing its personalization 
strategy. A study using a personalized ring-tone download website was 
conducted. The findings provide empirical evidence of the effects of web 
personalization. In particular, when users are forming their consideration 
sets, the agents can play a role in helping users discover new products 
and/or generate demand for unfamiliar products. Once a decision has been 
made, however, the personalization agent’s persuasive effects diminish. 
Our results establish that the role of personalization agents changes at 
different stages of users’ decision-making process. 

6. Beyond Perceptions and Usage: Impact of Nature of IS Use on IS-enabled 
Productivity (pp. 113-136) 
Vikas Jain and Shivraj Kanungo 

Assessing individual performance impacts from information system (IS) use 
has been a key area of concern for IS researchers for many years. However, 
past studies have reported mixed results about the relationship between 
information system use and performance impacts at the individual level. 
The research reported in this paper has two primary objectives: (1) to 
propose a model of individual IS-enabled productivity that focuses not 
only on the usage of information systems but also the nature of this 
usage, and (2) to empirically test the model across two IS applications. 
The key premise in this research is that IS use is necessary but not 
sufficient to observe productivity gains and that nature of IS use 
potentially mediates the relationship between IS use and IS-enabled 
productivity. We validate our research model through a survey of 486 
individuals across six organizations. Results from this study confirm the 
proposition that the nature of IS use is as important as the duration of 
use of an information system as a determinant of IS-enabled productivity. 
Based on our findings, we provide theoretical and managerial implications 
of the relationship between IS-enabled productivity and IS use. 

7. Role of Human Computer Interaction (HCI) Factors as Moderators of 
Occupational Stress and Work Exhaustion (pp. 137-154)
K.S. Rajeswari and R. N. Anantharaman 

Software professionals perform boundary-spanning activities and hence need 
strong interpersonal, technical and organizational knowledge to be 
professionally competent. They have to perform in a demanding work 
environment that is characterized by strict deadlines, differing time 
zones, interdependency in teams, increased interaction with clients and 
extended work hours. These characteristics lead to occupational stress and 
work exhaustion. Yet, the impact of stress is felt in different ways by 
different people even if they perform the same functions. These 
differences in the perception of stress can be due to varying confidence 
in their technical capabilities. Individuals possess varying technical 
capabilities based on their acquisition of technical skills, comfort level 
in using the technology and intrinsic motivation. These attributes 
represent the HCI personality of software professionals. It is therefore 
the focus of this paper to examine, if these HCI factors moderate the 
relationship between occupational stress and work exhaustion. Data was 
collected from software professionals located in Chennai and Bangalore in 
India. Data revealed that HCI factors have main effect on work exhaustion, 
but does not have moderating effects on work exhaustion. Control over 
technology variable emerged as the key variable among the HCI factors that 
affects software professionals’ ability to cope with stress and work 
exhaustion.

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Fiona Fui-Hoon Nah, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Management Information Systems
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
209 College of Business Administration
Lincoln, NE 68588-0491
Tel: (402) 472-6060
Fax: (402) 472-5855
Email: [log in to unmask]
My Home Page: http://ait.unl.edu/fnah
AIS SIGHCI Home Page: http://sigs.aisnet.org/sighci