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HCI International News, Number 34, March 2009


HCI International 2009 - On-line Registration and Advance Program

The Advance Program of HCI International 2009 is available through the Conference website at: http://www.hcii2009.org/program.php

Information about the on-line registration for the Conference is also available at: http://www.hcii2009.org/registration.html

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HCI International 2009 - Important Dates

  • Thursday, 30 April 2009, Mid Registration period ends

On-line registration is available through the Conference Management System (CMS). You can take advantage of the mid registration period, valid until 30 April 2009. Detailed information about the Registration process is available at: http://www.hcii2009.org/registration.html

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HCI International 2009 - Program for Student Volunteers

The HCII2009 Program for Student Volunteers gives university students from around the world the opportunity to attend and contribute to one of the most prestigious conferences in the field of computing and human-computer interaction.

For more information about Student Volunteering visit the Conference website at: http://www.hcii2009.org/student_volunteers.html

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HCI International 2009 - Exhibition

In the context of the HCI International 2009 Conference Exhibition, exhibitors will have an ideal opportunity to exhibit their products and services to an international audience of over 2,300 researchers, academics, professionals and users in the field of HCI. Attendees will be able to examine state-of-the- art HCI technology and interact with manufacturing representatives, vendors, publishers, and potential employers.

Current Exhibitors’ List (alphabetical order):

More information about the Exhibition can be found at the Conference website

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HCI International 2009 - Sponsorship

Organizations wishing to sponsor a special event or to be a general sponsor of the Conference are welcome to contact the Sponsorship Administration

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Cross-Cultural User Experience Design

Pei-Luen Patrick Rau, Department of Industrial Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, P. R. China

Globalization leads to extensive interaction between different cultures, either directly or indirectly. Differences in cultural mentalities and environments lead to different needs towards computing systems across different cultures, and this will often influence the interaction between computers and users. To support current complex use of technology, previously narrow and static vision of culture and approaches which simply apply cultural conventions in localization work are far from sufficient.

It is important to accommodate cultural differences in the design of user experience. Previous experience will influence users’ requirements for a system. For instance, Chinese people already established clear associations for the standard colors used in working conditions (Yellow for Caution, for example), which were not common in the Chinese culture before. Values held by different cultures may affect the functionality required. Nielson (1990) reported findings from LYRE, a French hypertext product, which allowed users to analyze a poem from various viewpoints. While in France it was accepted that students cannot add their own viewpoints but only use the viewpoints the teacher had added, this restriction was not well received by potential Scandinavian users.

A challenge of effective metaphor design is that people from different cultures have different perception for the same real-world objects, since users’ knowledge of everyday life and real world experience differ from culture to culture. Standardized symbols in a country may be misunderstood in other parts of the world. Abstract symbols and rarely used abbreviations can cause confusion, while pictorial symbols are recognized more often but the meaning tends to be linked to a particular cultural context. Caution is needed for the use of gestures as icons, since the same hand gesture often has different, sometimes opposite, meanings for different cultures.

As aesthetic perception is culturally dependent, so are the design of aesthetic elements of machine interfaces such as calligraphy, colors and graphics and their affective effects. Aesthetic perception and its relations to HCI relevant constructs reveal that current knowledge of cross-cultural differences is too limited to accurately predict how culture influences HCI related issues.

People with inferential-category or relational-contextual cognitive styles group objects on different basis, and this influences their performance with machine interfaces. Choong and Salvendy (1999) found that Chinese users perform better if the content is organized in a thematic structure and American users perform better with a functional structure. Time orientation affects how people arrange tasks, and therefore has a big impact on information structure design. Rau, Gao, and Liang (2008) reviewed previous studies and found that users with polychronic time orientation browse faster and take fewer steps than users with monochronic time orientation in a hypertext environment.

The growing demand for sociable technologies and sociable software is highlighted by the current popularity of online social services (the so-called Web 2.0). There are interesting differences between users from different cultures in the use of tags to group materials, the blogging contents and commenting styles, the promotion approaches of blogs or individuals, the connecting mechanisms in social networking sites, etc. All these indicate that obtaining a broad and dynamic understanding of culture is critical to the success of information products and services now and for the future.

Choong, Y. Y., & Salvendy, G. (1999). Implications for design of computer interfaces in Chinese users in mainland China. International Journal of Human Computer Interaction, 11(1).
Nielson, J. (1990). Usability testing of international interfaces. In J. Nielson (Ed.), Designing User Interfaces for International Use. New York: Elsevier.
Rau, P.L. P., Gao, Q., and Liang, S.F. M. (2008). Good computing systems for everyone – how on earth? Cultural aspects, Behaviour and Information Technology, 27(4), pp. 287-292.

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Recent Interesting News and Articles

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Upcoming Conferences and Events in the HCI Area

March 2009

April 2009

June 2009

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Previous Issues of HCI International NEWS are available online.


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Contribute to HCI International NEWS

We welcome your contribution to the HCI International News. Please send to us interesting news, short articles, interesting websites, etc. We will consider your comments and contributions for upcoming issues. Please send your contribution to the Editor, Dr. Abbas Moallem.

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About HCI International NEWS

The HCI International NEWS is a newsletter that contains information about the HCI International 2009 Conference, book reviews, news from the field of HCI, as well as links to interesting articles and conferences. If you have any questions or comments, or if you would like to make a contribution, please contact the Editor, Dr. Abbas Moallem. The opinions that are expressed in this Newsletter are the sole responsibility of its authors and do not represent any institution or company.

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