I recently attended the Annual conference of the Human Factors & Ergonomics Society in Groningen. The HFES promotes and advances how we, as professionals, understand the human factors involved in the design and use of technology, systems and artificial environments of all kinds.
I was presenting a paper from my MA in Industrial Design research, conducted over the previous two years in DesignCORE, IT Carlow. It is entitled, Shared Usability: A Support Mechanism to Product and Service System Design for Older Adults.
There were eight sessions over a three day period discussing HMI, surface transportation, vulnerable road users, mental workload and various other areas relevant to human factors. I was presenting in ‘Healthy Ageing’, and my paper argues how effective it is to consider associated stakeholders in addition to the older adult, in the process of design.
This expands on a user-centred design process and design-for-all approach, by involving and defining the associated stakeholders that can support or benefit user autonomy. Shared Usability supports user (or older adult) autonomy when they interact and use products or service systems. I have defined Shared Usability as:
Mutual agreement between the User and Associated Stakeholders on the levels of management or interaction required with a product or service as an objective to achieve Shared Usability. (Shore, 2014)
To read more about Linda’s research visit the abstract for her presentation on the HFES conference website. Linda is a Design Research Consultant at Graphic Mint and is involved in all our Usability Testing projects.
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