Designing for Autonomy
2014 (English)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
In this thesis, two problems are addressed.
The first problem is how designers of computerized artifacts come to understand what they should design. In order to improve their chances for solving the right problem, it is suggested to adopt a deductive theorizing protocol, based on falsification, as it is expressed in philosophy as well as in psychological research on problem solving and decision making.
It requires a shift in the role that designers take in communication with users; rather than considering users as objects of study, the designers' understanding is being scrutinized, by users.
To accomplish this, an explication of the designers' understanding is necessary to formulate: a Theory of Use, which should account for the assumptions that the designers make about the users and the use situation. It should also be focused on what the designers understand to be the qualities of a good solution. These assumptions and qualities should be formulated as statements that are falsifiable by the users. Through this, the designers can, in a systematic way, get feedback on how well they have understood what they are designing for. Furthermore, the Theory of Use becomes the requirements against which subsequent design hypotheses are evaluated.
The second problem is how to determine if a computerized artifact is appropriate for a given purpose. To guide such an evaluation, it is suggested to focus on the autonomy of the artifact's users. This is based on the philosophical and psychological conclusion that autonomy is necessary for human well-being, which is not explicitly taken into account in current design practice.
The proposed Theory of Use protocol also gives designers the autonomy they need for developing their understanding and expertise. It is intended to improve and guide communication with users, targeting the most important facet of design: the designers' understanding of what they are designing for. Moreover, the protocol puts users in control over what is developed for them, and lets them have the final say on how their lives are designed.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2014. , 191 p.
Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Science and Technology, ISSN 1104-2516 ; 105
design method, design philosophy, user-centered design, theorizing, falsification, interaction design, hypothesis, mental models, autonomy
Human Computer Interaction
Research subject Computer Science with specialization in Human-Computer Interaction
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-221877ISBN: 978-91-554-8932-8OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-221877DiVA: diva2:710288
2014-05-16, Room 2446, Polacksbacken, Lägerhyddsvägen 2, Uppsala, 13:15 (English)
Gotterbarn, Donald, Professor
Kavathatzopoulos, Iordanis, Professor