Introduction to Volume 3, Issue 4

Welcome to the fourth issue of volume 3 of JUS! We are closing volume 3 with this special issue devoted to usability with complex systems. For this special issue we have two guest editors: Barbara Mirel and Mike Albers. In addition, both Ginny Redish and Whitney Quesenbery acted as JUS’s associate editors and contributed to […] [Read More]

New Frontiers in Usability for Users’ Complex Knowledge Work

Abstract For usability professionals, one of the top priorities of the coming decades is to assure that products are usable and useful for people’s complex work in complex systems. To meet this challenge we need to better understand the nature and practices of various domain-based complex tasks and the flow of people’s work across tools. […] [Read More]

Creating Effective Decision Aids for Complex Tasks

Abstract Engineering design tasks require designers to continually compare, weigh, and choose among many complex alternatives. The quality of these selection decisions directly impacts the quality, cost, and safety of the final product. Because of the high degree of uncertainty in predicting the performance of alternatives while they are still just sketches on the drawing […] [Read More]

Switching Between Tools in Complex Applications

Abstract Large software applications are made up of many specialized tools. In Microsoft Word the document editor is supported by tools to create and fix drawings and tables. Programming environments have custom views (difference editors) and analyses (performance reports) to help developers make robust code. Every application has tools to help users sift the documentation. […] [Read More]

Unexpected Complexity in a Traditional Usability Study

Abstract This article is a case study of a demonstration project intended to prove the value of usability testing to a large textbook publishing house. In working with a new client, however, the research team discovered that what our client thought were simple problems for their users were actually complex problems that required the users […] [Read More]