Complexity in Technical Systems A New HCI Education Issue?

Lars Oestreicher
pp. 33-39 - download


In this paper it is proposed that the future teaching of Human- Computer Interaction will have to consider complexity in a more proactive way than has been the traditional view. The emergence of more and more complex systems that are not specifically co- designed, but where the components are still meant to operate in the same context or under similar conditions puts a new aspect on interface design. The inability to use technology emerges as a new type of accessibility problem in the modern world. In the paper concrete examples of this problem are presented, as well as a discussion on the effects, both on the individual level and on society as a whole.
The central statement in this paper is that Education in Human- Computer Interaction needs to start adding these more general complexity issues as part of the curriculum. The mind set of Computer Science and Human-Computer Interaction students needs to change in order to incorporate also technically connected complex systems, that are conceptually disparate or loosely coupled.

keywords: Complex systems, Usability, Education, Complexity, Conceptual Model


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