Introduction to Volume 14, Issue 2

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We are delighted to publish an essay by Sara Czaja titled “Usability of Technology for Older Adults: Where Are We and Where Do We Need to Be.” The author discusses the difficulty of older adults in using information and communication technologies (ICTs), including potential usability barriers. She reviews the work done as part of the Center for Research and Education on Aging and Technology Enhancement (CREATE) and their mission to promote the benefits of technology with a diverse population including older adults.

The first article by Lico Takahashi and Karsten Nebe is titled “Observed Differences Between Lab and Online Tests Using the AttrakDiff Semantic Differential Scale.” In this article the authors compare lab-based and online usability testing with respect to hedonics using the AttrakDiff questionnaire. They also investigated the presence and absence of a moderator within the lab-based testing condition. Their results have implications for how we measure hedonics in the context of usability testing.

The second article is by John Grishin and Douglas Gillan, titled “Exploring the Boundary Conditions of the Effect of Aesthetics on Perceived Usability.” The authors tackle the fundamental question about how perceived aesthetics impact judgments of usability and how this changes over time.  As part of this research, the authors pay special attention to user performance and how it correlates to both aesthetics and judgments in usability. Their work has contributed to our understanding of how perceived aesthetics play a role in measuring judgments of usability.

The third article by Sari Kujala, Talya Miron-Shatz, and Jussi J. Jokinen is titled “The Cross-Sequential Approach: A Short-Term Method for Studying Long-Term User Experience.” The authors share a new approach for conducting longitudinal user research that may save time and money, while still providing valuable insights into the user experience at different phases of using a product or service. A cross-sequential approach may provide UX researchers a valuable new method to examine the user experience over a period of time.