Current Principles And Standards Digital Fridge Computer Science Essay

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Digital Fridge pic(DF) meaning that a fridge with enhanced features like what is cooling inside, product deadlines, receipts, keeping record of diets, making an automatic VOIP calls etc which has now become one of the substantial element in home and also in food refrigeration market and also thrown lot more challenges to competitors by making them give innovation which mostly resulted in failure. Earlier in 98 one of the competitors launched a fridge with pc which resulted in a massive failure and most people pointed to the lack of user analysis, usage scenarios evaluation and task analysis for the failure to occur.

So to overcome this failure and to make sure this wont be repeated again Board of Directors at DF has given me the following responsibility

Reviewing current literature and standards for usable interactive systems and should give justification for the one I use.

User and Usage scenarios should be modelled as per my wish.

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Finding out all the functional and non-functional requirements for the user and usage scenarios and giving an justification as how they would be useful in making the system successful

To provide some screen shots or sketched drawn samples to demonstrate any possible important usable feature of its GUI.

My basic responsibility given here are to give the DF requirement engineer a detailed and immediately applicable Usability Guidelines and also some of the things that agreed already between me and DF is that the interactive system shouldn't be having any keyboard facilities not even a virtual keyboard and that it should always run in kiosk modality on a touch screen, and also the system should have bar code scanners to scan the item that is to be kept inside fridge and other simple input devices can also be used.

CURRENT PRINCIPLES AND STANDARDS

When going through the current principles and standards of usable interactive systems what I have learned through scholarly research is that everyone gives more stress on the fact that user modeling and usability modeling should be promoted in order to get the enhanced requirement specifications for the successful interactive product to be designed as stated by Sisira Adikari and Craig McDonald ICiA 2006 in the International Conference that held on 15-17 Dec. 2006 Page(s):151 - 154. This paper also provides a concept that functional specification of human interactive system are provided to product designers and designer will produce user interface design which is then compared and then evaluated with the design that is created using user and usage modeling techniques and this process is repeated several times with lots of designers as a result of which they claim that usability can be made much more efficient.

Initially to understand what is Usability, Ealier in 1993 jakob nielsen in his book usability engineering explains what is usability and give in an in-depth knowledge of usability. According to nielsen, Usability is not a single, one-dimensional property of a user-interface and it has multiple components, and it depends on five basic attributes which are learnability, efficiency, memorability, errors and satisfaction .Nielsen also provided with four techniques for less expensive methodology which is being referred as Discount Usability Engineering. In 1994 jakob in his paper Usability Inspection Methods tries to evaluate user interfaces to find out usability problems through a set of inspection methods .And some of those inspection methods that he described are Heuristics Evaluation ,Cognitive Walkthroughs ,Formal Usability Inspection Methods ,Pluralistic Walkthroughs .Of these Inspection Methods Heuristics Evaluation is the most popular one and what it exactly does is that there are set of recognized principles which will be followed by multiple evaluators for the usability problems in the user interface. Nielsen keep explaining about why multiple evaluators being used because of the fact that what one evaluator thinks might not be the same as of what other evaluator think. This is being illustrated by the following graph which shows that when number of evaluators rise then the proportion of usability problems found also rise.

Recently on march 7,2011 in Userfocus.co.uk david travis argues that many usability test are worthless and also Researchers recruit the wrong kind of participants, test the wrong kind of tasks, put too much weight on people's opinions, and expect participants to generate design solutions and also stresses on the fact that people sometimes adopt the paraphernalia of usability testing, such as the one-way mirror and the video cameras, but forget the core principles of doing user research and conclude by saying that if we Get those core principles right then we can run a great usability test with just a pencil and paper.

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When designing an interactive system it is very important to bear in mind that user and product need to be jelled which can only be done with the help of knowing all kind of user requirements in order to satisfy them, so what XianYi Yang[1]Professor, Director, uhan University of Technology Institute of Art and design,Wu Han City, China in his paper Human-Computer Interaction Design in Product Design says that there are five basic principles that need to be followed when designing an interactive system, five of them which are visibility, correct and clear feedback, restriction, mapping and matching, consistency.

In the paper Usability of Consumer Electronic Products by Sung H. Han*, Myung Hwan Yun, Jiyoung Kwahk, Sang W. Hong Department of Industrial Engineering, Pohang University of Science and Technology, San 31, Hyoja, Pohang, 790-784, South Korea states that different usability dimensions should be applied for all the different products as each and every products would vary according to user requirements and as a result of which 48 usability dimensions were identified which were grouped in to two categories namely performance and image/impression. Performance dimension focuses mainly on specific criteria that is used to evaluate the user performance and it always use the subjective aspects.

Image/Impression Dimension came in to consideration because of the fact that many people are not giving more importance to subjective aspects and therefore 350 relevant expressions being extracted and which were then analysed and synthesized to get 25 image/impression dimensions.

International Standard Organization proposed lots of standards for user interface and usability such as ISO 9241,ISO 13407,ISO 14915,IEC 61997.Of these ISO 9241 in its 11th part exactly gives usability guidelines such as to which extent a product can be used by a specified users so that expected goals can be achieved with efficiency,effectiveness and satisfaction.

MY PROPOSED APPROACH

I will hereby provide some of user and usage modelling,user profiling,user typing so that all the expectations of user can be analysed and make the user interface much more user friendly rather than making it more complex for user by adding too much functionalities and features.Then following these steps I will provide a scenario which will make use of the personas I have demonstrated and then will perform Heirarchical Task analysis based on the scenarios which will be useful to analyse what are the constraints that the user faces in the interface and also it will indeed help us to list down what are all the project issues and the future developments that can be done in this project which is being explained in the later stage..Also all the functional and non functional requirements are listed down so that it will make the DF requirement engineers reduce the burden of building a more complex system.

USER AND USAGE MODELLING

USER ANALYSIS

As I have got no restriction of what kind of user I need to analyse about using the fridge I took two personas on my own wish which is being showed below

Persona 1 : Michael

Michael is a 32 year old man who got divorced just recently and been living alone for the past 3 months and he is working as bank manager in private bank nearby his house. Michael has been suffering from diabetics for the past two years and he is been strictly advised by doctor to take his food and medication properly at correct time failing which will result in serious health issues. Michael doesn't like spending money on outside food and always prefer to eat home-made foods and he also loves cooking. He also prefer to take lot of fruits and food that has more proteins and carbohydrates content and not to take foods enriched in fat content and also been trying to reduce intake of alcohol as it will make his health condition more worse, so Michael trying to keep a note of what are all the ingredients being taken and kept inside the fridge then and there so that he can maintain his balanced diet and also can plan diet to maintain his good health.

Persona 2 : Sarah

Sarah is a 28 year old girl who just got married recently with sam who is working as a professor in a university .Sarah is a home based telesales executive whose job is to call the customer and make them buy the household products. she used to keep an up to date information about local news and surf through net all the time and would love chatting with her friends and listening to music and watch TV. Mostly on weekends sarah used to go for partying with her husband and friends. She doesn't like cooking and always love to eat in restaurant but still because of her husband would cook only on morning and night everyday.

USAGE ANALYSIS

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Usage analysis which is being given below gives all the attributes of usage of the interface by the two personas that i have already identified

Frequency

Though both these persona that i have mentioned above are contrasting in character and also in life style their frequency of use would be more or less similar because if u take sarah for example unlike michael she might not like cooking but still she may use the fridge for listening to songs, watching tv or surfing through net.

Duration

Duration of use of the system depends on the type of process that this persona chooses. For example if sarah want to make a call or surf through net or listen to song then then the duration for the interaction between sarah and interface may be long but at the same time if she wishes to keep some recipes inside it may take hardly two to three minutes.

Environment

As you all can assume environment in which fridge would be kept is kitchen and it involves wet places as sink would be nearby, and also can see lot more vessels and also it has got lot more ingredients scattered all over the place.

Interruptions

There may be interruptions like alarm, door bell, telephone call but most of them don't have huge impact on the user when interacting with the interface as most of the operations don't take more than five to ten minutes.

USER TYPING

Title

Description

Cook

He/She is the person who usually keep an eye on fridge always to see if there is enough ingredients for him/her to cook the favourite recipe for them and/or for their family and will let know the person who would buy the stocks if there is any stock running out of product.And this cook can be father,mother or anyone who usually cook in a kitchen often.

Manager

He/She is the person who would manage things in fridge like buying the products and filling it up in the fridge on monthly basis or on daily basis.

Raider

He/She is the person who can be anyone at random apart from the cook and manager who usually uses the fridge like children, guest etc

USER PROFILE

Application

Digital Fridge

User Class

Cook

Characteristics

Description about characteristics

Requirement needed

User Type

Usually focus only on cooking and wont give much priority on buying any stock or delegate that job to manager

Menu options should be simple and easily understandable

Age Range

Between 25 to 50

Frequency of Use

Most often will use at morning and night daily

If interface not used then there should be some power saving options so that monthly elecricity bill wont account much because of fridge

Computer Experience

Usually person who is cooking cannot be guaranteed that he/she would have good computer knowledge but atleast they know how to use simple menu options

There should be no complex procedures to see for the recipe and all the words should be kept short and simple

Aim

Enjoys cooking and try out different dishes with the ingredients available and main aim is to make sure the food is being done perfectly at correct time

Interface can help user by displaying recipe for a particular dish and also displaying how much calories are there in each recipes so that they can maintain a balanced diet

Education

Mostly everyone would be literate or can atleast read the menu

Guidelines on how to operate the interface with some illiustrations can be useful

Number of user

Not more than two

Interface should be understood by any user who wants to cook

Other Kind of Technologies Used

Mobile,Oven,ATM

Interface can have menu options with some diagrammatic representation as in mobile phones as user feel very easy to use it

Interruptions

May find interruptions like getting a call,door bell,some alarm beeping etc

Interface should have to wait for atleast 5 to 10 minutes if user not responding then should go back to main menu

Application

Digital Fridge

User class

Manager

Characterisitcs

Description about characteristics

Requirement needed

User Type

Main job is to make sure any ingredient is not running out of product and refilling them at correct time so that cook make use of it to prepare dish without any delay

Interface should display all the ingredients that is being stocked up inside fridge and should give an alarm if there is anything running out of product

Age Range

Between 25 to 50

Frequency of use

Wont use the interface much as of like cook but will use it like weekly basis to make sure enough products are there and if no make an call or make sure automatic call being done for online shopping

Should make sure all the ingredients are readily available for cook atleast for a week

Computer Experience

Mostly manager would have good computer knowledge

Interface should not be having complex operations

Aim

Should keep an eye on the stocks being filled inside the fridge and should re-stock it up whenever necessary

All the options for stocking up the fridge should be easy

Education

Mostly literate or atleast know how to read

Guidelines on how to operate the interface with some illiustrations can be useful

Number of user

One or maximum two

Interface should be easy to understand by any number of user who wants to manage the interface

Other kind of technologies used

Microwave Oven,Atm,Mobile phone

Interface can have menu options with some diagrammatic representation as in mobile phones as user feel very easy to use it

Interruptions

May find interruptions like getting a call,or door bell ringing etc

Interface should have to wait for atleast 5 to 10 minutes if user not responding then should go back to main menu

Application

Digital Fridge

User Class

Raider

Characteristics

Description about characteristics

Requirement needed

User Type

He/She is the person who randomly comes to the interface and operates it

Should give an caution or warning symbol if the user presses the invalid option

Age Range

Cant be told as he/she can be of any age

Frequency of use

Not often

If the interface being used by person apart from cook and manager then he/she should be logged in as guest so that certain preference and security can be done in guest

Computer Experience

Depends on the type of user but most of them would know atleast to read

Interface should not be having complex operations

Aim

Raider usually try to access fridge just to get any drinks or food from inside fridge and wont know how to stock it up or prepare recipes

There should be log in option as guest and should have preference like showing what drink or food available

Education

Cant guarantee that they have good educational knowledge as raider can be even kids or children

Diagrammatic representations can help raider

Number of user

Can be of any number of user

Interface should be easy to understand by any number of user who uses it

Other kind of technologies used

Microwave Oven, Atm, Mobile phone

Interface can have menu options with some diagrammatic representation as in mobile phones as user feel very easy to use it

Interruptions

Cant be told

Cant be told

Scenarios : Usage Examples

Scenario 1 : Checking the calories of the recipe and also the product deadline(Michael)

Michael who is on weekend holiday want to prepare onion soup for himself and also want to see how much calorie does each ingredient in soup has so that he can maintain his balanced diet and also he want to check all the ingredients expiry date so that he can make an online shopping so that products deadline can be analysed and can be thrown in to waste bin if any product meets the deadline. In order to perform this task Michael presses the "Michael" login session and the interface ask what task he want to perform, and he presses search for a recipe. After this interface would ask list all the recipe with recipe name, Once Michael presses on onion soup , the interface will show the method on how to prepare it and also display the ingredients in it in the side. Michael presses on each ingredient to see how much calories does it have and also checks on the expiry date. If any particular ingredient is about to meet the deadline then there is option for purchase button which will be pressed to do online shopping.

Scenario 2 : Stocking up the fridge (sarah)

Sarah who is feeling bored in home after finishing her work want to see if all the ingredients are available in fridge and want to call and purchase a product if product is running out of stock. Sarah goes in to "sarah" as an login session and is pressing on the "Ingredients Available" option in the main menu and then the interface shows a list of all ingredients available inside the fridge. Sarah now want to see in detail of each and every ingredient and so now she presses on the "Butter" option which is on the list to see the detailed description of that ingredient. It is now showing how much butter available now, and the expiry date of it and also gives an option if an online shopping to be done for that particular ingredient. Now sarah want to buy that product so presses the online shopping and now after getting the butter sarah uses the bar code scanner to scan that item so that database will add that product and also keeps an track of its deadline. And also sarah can manually add each item by pressing the "Add item Manually" and Suppose if she is not interested in online shopping there is an option called "Prepare list for shopping" which will add all the items to be shopped and then it can be printed.

HIERARCHICAL TASK ANALYSIS

HTA1 : Checking the calorie of the recipe and also the product deadline

Checking the Calorie of the recipe and also the product deadline

Go near the Interface

Press "Michael" as an log-in session

Search for a Recipe

Select a recipe from the list

Method of how to do?

Ingredients Available in this Recipe

Select a ingredient from the list

No of item left

Expiry date

Calorie of this ingredient

Purchase it?

Scan and add this ingredient?

Calorie in the Recipe

Ingredients Available

Select a ingredient from the list

No of item left

Expiry date

Calorie of this ingredient

Purchase it?

Scan and add this ingredient?

Checking the calorie of the recipe

Go near the interface

Press on Michael as an Log-in session

Search Recipe

Ingredients Available

Select a recipe from the list

Method of how to do

Ingredients Available on it

Calorie of the Recipe

Select a Ingredient

No of item left

Expiry Date

Calorie

Purchase it?

Scan and Add this Item

Select a ingredient from the list

No of item left

Expiry Date

Calorie

Purchase it?

HTA 2 : Stocking up the fridge

Checking the Calorie of the recipe and also the product deadline

Go near the Interface

Press "Michael" as an log-in session

Search for a Recipe

Select a recipe from the list

Method of how to do?

Ingredients Available in this Recipe

Select a ingredient from the list

No of item left

Expiry date

Calorie of this ingredient

Purchase it?

Online Shopping?

Browse internet and order

Scan and add item

Print the item for shopping

Scan and add this ingredient?

Calorie in the Recipe

Ingredients Available

Select a ingredient from the list

No of item left

Expiry date

Calorie of this ingredient

Purchase it?

Online Shopping?

Browse internet and order

Scan and add this item

4.5.2 Print the item for shopping

Scan and add this ingredient?

Stocking up the fridge

Go near the interface

Press on Sarah as an Log-in session

Search Recipe

Ingredients Available

Select a recipe from the list

Method of how to do

Ingredients Available on it

Calorie of the Recipe

Select a Ingredient

No of item left

Expiry Date

Calorie

Purchase it?

Online Shopping?

Scan and Add this Item

Browse internet and order

Scan and add the item

Select a ingredient from the list

No of item left

Expiry Date

Calorie

Purchase it?

Print this item for shopping

Online Shopping

Print the Item name for shopping

Browse internet and order

Scan and add the item

REQUIREMENT SPECIFICATION

Project Drivers

In general Project Drivers are the one who make up whole of the project or the one who drives the project to be successful without any fault.

Project Drivers

Description

Customers

They are the people who is responsible for making the product successful and therefore it is very important to make sure that they are well satisfied with the product

Development team for the product

This team has got certain process to do to make sure that a product is been developed without any fault and also will document each and every stages or steps in that process

Testing Team for the Product

This team accounts a large impact on the success of product as the product been tested several times with various inputs and checking if they are producing the desired output

Installation and configuration engineers

After the product been developed installation and configuration engineers will fix it properly as per the customer wants

Sales Team

If the sales team is not well recognized one among the people then even if the product is a very good one it would go unnoticed in the market

Advertising agencies

There should be enough advertising on the product to make it reach to the people so even advertising agencies should have gained good image over the market

PROJECT CONSTRAINTS

Given Constraints

System not supposed to use keyboard not even virtual keyboard

System should run in kiosk mode

When stocking up the fridge or add an item in to the fridge it is necessary to use input devices like barcode scanners and also other desirable input devices

Impacts on user because of this Constraints

User cant use remote or anyother wireless device to operate the system so disabled person cant operate this and so special features need to be added to overcome this.

As there is no keypad, user wont be able to type any character and so it takes more time to press each and every character to perform some action, and so to overcome this, some alternative need to be found out to make all the operations easy and fast to use by the user.

FUNCTIONAL REQUIREMENTS

Mandatory Hardware

All the interactions between user and system must be in touch screen mode and remote controls or any other wireless devices are strictly restricted

System must run in kiosk mode

Mandatory Software

System should have provision to store the data of all the recipes and ingredients that is been kept inside

System should allow the user to keep an track of the products deadlines

System should make an automatic call if any product running out of stock

Recommended Hardware

Bar-code scanners can be used to add the item name and also its deadline in to database

CCTV camera can be fixed inside the fridge so that it will help the user to keep an eye on all the food products that is been kept inside

Alarm can be fixed so that if any product deadline is met or any other hardware failure occur alarm will let the user know about it

Water-resistant LCD monitors can be used.

Recommended Software

There can be software for making an automatic VOIP calls for online shopping

Provision for accessing internet and making a call to friends and talk through mic and loudspeakers.

Software for automatically print the ingredients that is running out of stock

NON-FUNCTIONAL REQUIREMENTS

Basic Guidelines for setting up the interface

Fonts in the interface should be always Arial

Number of colours shouldn't exceed more than three. All warnings and error in red, general screen in black and white and highlighted areas in blue

Minimum screen size - 15mm*15mm

Minimum Font size - 14pt

Usability requirements

Navigation

Favourite and most often used recipe should be displayed at the top

Every screen should have previous and Main Menu option

Each and every button should have their fonts clearly visible by specifying their functions properly

All navigation should be with the help of buttons and not with the help of text box, check box or anything else.

FeedBack

If the user made to wait for some operation then the reason for it should be displayed on the screen with valid reason

All the screen should have learning guidelines for each and every button

If any operation done successfully then acknowledgement for that operation should be in the form of audio and also through the interface screen.

Operational Requirements

Multi tasking should be supported by interface such as when user want to prepare recipe and also to listen to music simultaneously

All the operations should be through touch screen

Maintainability and portability Requirements

System need to keep track of all the products and number of items available properly

If there is any conflictions with the user input and the system memory then the interface should be in a state to overcome it by efficient mathematical calculation or through efficient functionality

Security Requirements

Log in session should be provided for each user so that security preferences can be done for each user

Only Trusted website should be opened for online transactions for buying any product.

Performance Requirements

Processor and inbuilt memory should be in such a way that it should make the system more fast and reliable to user

Even if the user doing two or more operations simultaneously system performance shouldn't get affected

Cultural and political Requirements

All the information in the interface should not be in a state to oppose the cultural aspects of the country

Every word used in the interface should be of English

PROJECT ISSUES

As the system cannot make use of keyboards or any remote controls to operate it, disabled find it difficult to access the interface

How to overcome?

Special features need to be included in the interface to support the disabled in accessing them like voice recognition system.

As the fridge is kept in kitchen it is very likely to get affected by water so the interface need to be like water-resistant

As the system is confined to English it may be difficult for people from other countries who doesn't know English to access them so interface need to provide the languages list from which particular language can be selected

POSSIBLE EXTENSIONS

System can be given provision of using wireless devices to access them

Facilities like fixing CCTV cameras inside fridge should be provided

Electronic pen or other input devices can be made available for accessing the interface

Voice Messaging can be made as an option in the interface.

DESIGNS

STORY BOARDS

Checking the Calorie Of the Recipe and also the product Deadline

Going near the interface

.

Press Michael as an log-in session

LOGIN

1) Michael

2) Guest

Main menu

Hi Michael,

Select the option

1) Search for a recipe

2 ) Ingredients Available

Previous MainMenu

Select the Recipe

…..

Onion Soup

…..

2)

Previous Main Menu

Onion Soup

Method : Ingredients on this Recipe

Take a glass of water …………………… 1)…….

.......................................................... 2)………

…………………………………………………………

Stocking up the fridge

LOGIN

1) Sarah

2) Guest

Main menu

Hi Sarah,

Select the option

1) Search for a recipe

2 ) Ingredients Available

3) ………

Previous MainMenu

List Of Ingredients

…..

…..

Egg

Previous Main Menu

No Of Egg left - 10

Expiry Date - 22/ 01/11

Calorie -

Purchase it?

Scan and Add this Item

Previous Main Menu

Online Shopping?

Print this Item For Shopping

Egg

Am going to scan it

I heard the sound of acknowledgement

PROTOTYPE

To illustrate that the requirements that I mentioned above have been used in the system, I will provide some of the screen shots below

Log-in Screen

Log in as

User 1

User 2

Guest

Main-Menu Screen

Welcome User1

Select the option you want

Search for a recipe

Ingredients Available

Make a call

Browse through net

Watch TV and listen to music

Previous Main Menu Help

Main Menu  Search for a Recipe  List of Recipe  Onion Soup

Onion Soup

Method: Ingredients Available:

Take a glass of water ………..

Favourite Recipe

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