6.831 • User Interface Design and Implementation

Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
Fall Semester, 2006

GR1: Task Analysis

Due in 1 week, at 5:00pm on Tuesday, September 26th, 2006, by email.

User & Task Analysis

In this group assignment, you will start the design of your term project by doing the following:

To gather information for the user and task analysis, you should interview 3 representative users who face your problem (at least 1 from each user class, if you have multiple user classes). If possible, observe them dealing with the problem in their real work environment. When you write up your analysis, don't provide a narrative of these sessions. Instead, offer your conclusions, and justify them when you can by referring to observations. For example, "grocery shoppers may be distracted by children; one mother was repeatedly harrassed by her son to buy some candy." Also, don't identify the users you interviewed by name, unless you get their permission to do so.

Your report should be around 4 pages. Include the following parts:


In this assignment, you should also create your group's page on the class wiki, and start to fill it with information about your project. You will continue to add to your wiki page over the course of the semester. The primary purpose of this page is to give background information about your project to classmates who have to evaluate it.

The class wiki is located here: http://courses.csail.mit.edu/6.831/wiki

Log in with your wiki account (which you should receive over email), edit the main page, and create a link to your project's page. Follow the format of the Example Project when you create your link to your project. The main page for your project should be located in Projects/ProjectName, where ProjectName is the name you chose for your project.

After you create a link to your project page, click through it to the (initially blank) page, and edit it to include the following parts. Look at the Example Project (or even better, look at the editing view for Example Project) for a model to follow.

Feel free to use the wiki for working documents and communication within your group, but be sure to prefix all your group's pages with Projects/ProjectName/, so that different groups don't step on each other. For example, you might put your task analysis in Projects/ProjectName/TaskAnalysis. Note that wikis have no concept of relative pathnames, so you can't simply link to TaskAnalysis from your main project page and assume the wiki will expand it to Projects/ProjectName/TaskAnalysis. You have to use the full page name in every link.

You can also put internal group information on your project's main page, but be sure to mark it as such, and keep it at the bottom of the page.

If you've never edited a wiki before, you may find this FAQ on basic wiki usage and Wikipedia editing guide helpful. Our wiki software is MediaWiki. You can ask questions on the 6831 mailing list, or send mail to 6831staff@mit.edu.

What to Hand In

This assignment has two deliverable components: a wiki page and a written report. Both must be complete by the deadline. Create your wiki page according to the instructions above. Email your report as a PDF file to 6831handin@csail.mit.edu and include GR1 in the subject line. There are free software products for printing documents out to PDF files.