WUD 2018 @ CCG – usability for all

The Applied Research Domain PIU: Perception, Interaction and Usability, of the Centro de Computação Gráfica (CCG), marked the World Usability Day (WUD) 2018, with a conference (November 8) and an Open Day (November 9) related to the theme.

WUD 2018, November 8: Conference “Designing for Good or Evil?”

The fourth issue of this event organized by the CCG had as theme “Designing for Good or Evil?” and was attended by national and international experts who focused on the importance of user-centered work for the usability of any product or service.

The design process has a huge influence on people’s behavior. In this edition were presented medical products and services, programming platforms and citizenship tools, such as citizen’s shops or obituary space. It was concluded that design should be viewed as a mission, and it should be inclusive and accessible, and both usability and accessibility of a product should be seen as assets.

The start of the day was given by Carlos Silva, development coordinator of the PIU Applied Research Domain of the CCG, who organized the event, and presented some of the projects of this domain of the present (ANPEB, 3D Car Cluster, CHIC) and unveiled some of the PIU projects of the near future (Protouch e 5G-MOBIX).

Next, the session on usability in Health and Medical Devices was inaugurated by Ana Correia de Barros, from Fraunhofer AICOS, who presented us with some principles for good design in the industry. There is no medical prescription for bad design. There are a number of questions that industrial designers face, as well as very important choices in industrial design to make while considering 3 perspectives on each challenge (things, intelligence, people). These considerations can lead a designer either for good or for evil solutions.

Inês Martins and Diogo Lopes, Adapttech, shared experiences on issues such as prosthetic monitoring, the scope for innovation in this field, and the peculiarities of the certification process. They shared with the audience the need to run user device tests to find gaps and acquire data to see if they are actually solving problems.

The first session of User-centered Products and Services was presented by António Silva (Faculty of Letters of the University of Porto) and Bruno Giesteira (Faculty of Fine Arts of the University of Porto) with a presentation entitled “The evilness of the design of everyday things” , whose main objective was to show that routine objects have to be inclusive. António Silva, a blind professor at FLUP, recorded for two weeks the accessibility of the objects of his daily life, both at home and in college, testing their design for good or evil. They shared with the audience their difficulties in using ticket machines, Bimby machines, wovens, microwaves, washing machines, elevators, vending machines, printers, among others.

Ricardo Ferreira, from Outsystems, shared with the audience the company’s success story of integrating user-centric design services with product development – not without its difficulties and shortcomings along the way. He concluded that it is imperative to experiment, to think all over again, together with a design team, in order to create products with which users fall in love at first sight and with whom they maintain a long-term relationship.

The morning session was concluded by Bruno Monteiro of LabX, who said that any technological transformation should take into account the integration of the population. There are constant changes in priorities and behaviors, demands, and paradigms. The ideal work formula contemplates three actions: research, design, and experiment.

The afternoon session continued the theme of the user-centered design of products and services. It started with the presentation of Ana Parada, from Advertio, who reported that if a User Interface is beautiful, we should also be able to use it. She also spoke of some dark patterns that negatively influence interaction with interfaces and that, as humans, we pay more attention to negative experiences than to positive and neutral ones.

Alison Burrows of the Univesity of Bristol then shared the good and bad experiences related to the implementation of a Large-Scale User Experience Design (SPHERE) project with ethnographic studies for the installation of well monitoring equipment-stay in about 100 homes in the UK.

Paula Trigueiros, from the University of Minho, followed with a reflection on how design is important in our lives, as it makes us feel better. The message she wanted to convey was that sometimes it may not be necessary to create something new, but just adapt, adjust. Adapt to make things better, since small changes can make all the difference. Splitting the problem is a very important task in usability.

Finally, the keynote speaker of the event, Virginia Tech Transportation Institute’s Andy Schaudt, analyzed the present and future of autonomous driving, where he introduced the human as a passenger rather than a driver.

WUD 2018, November 9: Open Day @ CCG

The second round of WUD 2018 in the CCG consisted of an Open Day with demonstrations of the CCG works and presentations of the PIU domain.

In discussion was the Portuguese landscape of usability.

After this presentation, the Open Day roundtable was held with: Paula Trigueiros (UM), João Moutinho (CCG – UMC), Carlos Silva (CCG – PIU) and Andy Schaudt (VTTI). The topics under discussion were usability challenges: medical devices, autonomous vehicles, voices user interfaces and smart cities. The session moderated by Emanuel Sousa (CCG – PIU) quickly came to life and addressed topics such as the definition of the future we speak of, and how a better education could result in smarter products and services, more focused on all its users. The table concludes that technological development is circular: just start with improving a person’s life that this will eventually affect the lives of many others.

The roundtable ended with a conversation between the speakers and the CCG’s PIU team.

Open Day concluded in Porto with the MeetUp Porto.UX, where Beth Goldman from feedzai and Maggie Law from okta presented examples of design work that could be interpreted as good or bad in an important reflection on design ethics.

Demonstration CCG PIU – real time binaural sound.

Demonstration CCG CVIG.

Round table with usability challenges.

End of the Open Day at the CCG.

Beth Goldman from feedzai at the MeetUp Porto.UX.