Improving product usability through inclusive design consideration can enhance a products potential commercial success, whilst widening it’s acceptability across an increasingly divergent market. An experimental approach was developed to encapsulate how individuals perceive, process and respond to stimuli during interaction with products. By presenting a sample of participants with a novel product, we are able to assess how their understanding and internal conceptualisations are developed during increasing product exposure, and indicate how product design can have a significant impact upon these processes. Participants were recorded interacting with the novel product whilst providing concurrent protocol and information elicited regarding the development of internal representations. The extent of participants’ technological familiarity was also investigated to determine how prior experience may assist novel product interaction. Age related differences were evident in both approaches to problem solving and extent of technological familiarity, and this was considered to have an impact upon overall interactional performance.
Author and article information
Engineering Design Centre, Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge
Trumpington Street, Cambridge CB2 1PZ, UK