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Aesthetics in Human-Computer Interaction
Industrial designers have long been concerned with the aesthetic qualities of their products, but appearance and the responses to appearance of software as an integral part of the user experience has only captured the imagination of human-computer interaction (HCI) researchers in the past few years. As the number of researchers who contribute to this stream of research is increasing, it becomes clear that: (1) aesthetics does make a difference in HCI, and (2) that much research is needed on many fronts of this area to clarify the role of aesthetics in human-computer interaction.
To better coordinate the direction of these further explorations, a seminar was organized from July 13th to 16th at Schloss Dagstuhl titled The Study of Visual Aesthetics in Human-Computer Interaction. About twenty-five researchers and practitioners from around the world gathered together to discuss how aesthetics can be better taken into account analyzing and designing human-computer interactions in the future. The discussion focused on clarification of the concept of aesthetics in HCI (e.g. visual aesthetics vs. aesthetics of interaction) and their relation to other important concepts (e.g. aesthetics as part of a user experience vs. aesthetic as a quality description of a user experience). Furthermore, the role of moderating and boundary conditions (e.g. system genres) was discussed and research results were presented regarding the measurement of aesthetics in HCI (e.g. visual aesthetics) and aesthetics influence on other variables of the interaction (e.g. users’ emotions and overall judgments). A list of the participants and their position papers can be found on the Participants+Materials-Website.
If you have any ideas regarding the role of aesthetics in HCI, comment on our blog!