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069 - Interactive Situation Models for Cognitive Aspects of User-Artefact Interaction


Cognitive aspects of human interaction with artefacts is a central concern for Cognitive Technology. Techniques to investigate them will gain greater significance as new products and technologies more closely customised to specific users are introduced. The study of Cognitive Dimensions is a well-established technique that can be used to support and direct empirical investigation of cognitive aspects of artefact use. This paper proposes a complementary technique, based on constructing 'interactive situation models', that applies to the study of specific user-artefact interactions. It interprets the cognitive activities of the user through interrelating situational, explicit, mental and internal aspects of state. The application of this approach in analysing, recording and classifying such activities is illustrated with reference to a simple case study based on modelling the use of an actual digital watch. The paper concludes with a brief discussion of possible connections with Cognitive Dimensions and implications for 'invisible computing'.