Accession Number:



Embedded Process Modeling, Analogy-Based Option Generation and Analytical Graphic Interaction for Enhanced User-Computer Interaction: An Interactive Storyboard of Next Generation User-Computer Interface Technology. Phase 1

Descriptive Note:

Final technical rept. for Jan 1988

Corporate Author:


Report Date:


Pagination or Media Count:



Computer-based problem-solving systems are often extremely difficult to use. The word processing program used to prepare this SBIR Phase I technical report -- Wordstar TM -- is a case in point. There are over a hundred and forty-four commands in Wordstar, but research suggests that the vast majority of users rely heavily upon but eight. In follow-up interviews to human factors studies, respondents stated that it is impossible to remember more than a few commands so they learn to rely upon those that are absolutely necessary to perform their duties. The commands themselves are non-mnemonic and often counter-intuitive, and the systems help commands were clearly designed with expert -- not novice -- users in mind. Wordstar is far from unique. Other word processing, spreadsheet, decision option selection, and data base management programs suffer from the same inadequacies. International Information Systems, Inc. IIS has been actively involved in the design and development of decision aids and support systems for command and control since 1979 and has yet to conceive of a system that did not face significant user-computer interface UCI challenges. Sometimes these challengers were met sometimes they were not. It is imperative that we not only design systems with good UCIs but that we design systems that can get their users out of trouble as well.

Subject Categories:

  • Computer Programming and Software
  • Human Factors Engineering and Man Machine Systems

Distribution Statement: