23 February 2022
With the advancement of technology over the decade, there has been a rising increase in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) systems. From the computer to mobile, every device used is based on the foundation of the same interaction that offers pillars for simple yet friendly conversation.
While the concept seems simple, this is a multidisciplinary approach that moves a step ahead of the communication quality between the user and computer and focuses on computer design. A system that is designed to enrich the customer experience and reach larger connectivity of design, research, and product development is Human-Computer Interaction. HCI has always been a part of technology and design, but it is on the rise as technology becomes more integrated with our daily lives.
What is Human-Computer Interaction?
Human-computer interaction is the field of science and technology that is linked to the study and understanding of design and computer technology.
Developers and engineers have a function-first approach to a solution, and their focus is to provide an engineering solution to an existing problem. It studies primarily how people interact with computers and to what extent the users can interact with the computers. The goal is to have a successful interaction between both the computer and the user and to see which areas still need more development. HCI consists of three components: the user, the computer, and how these two work together.
HCI helps to make interfaces that increase productivity, enhance user experience, and reduce risks in safety-critical systems. Poorly designed machines lead to many unexpected problems, sometimes just user frustration, but sometimes, chaotic disasters.
As we become more dependent on technologies, even just the Internet or smartphones, HCI has become a key part of designing tools that can be used efficiently and safely on a daily basis.
What is the importance of Human-Computer Interaction?
The study of human-computer interaction aims to create a conversation between people and machines that seems natural and intuitive. A superior user experience that doesn’t necessitate a lot of physical or mental effort is what designers and product developers strive to achieve. Humans use digital devices to do various jobs, and effective human-computer interfaces are essential. Lack of consideration for human-computer interaction can result in poorly designed user interfaces that have an adverse effect on product usability and raise the likelihood of product failure.
Designers can gain invaluable knowledge about ergonomics, usability, user behaviours, emotional responses, user goals, and user personas by researching human-computer interaction. The goal of HCI is to reduce the amount of effort a user expends when using technology. It aspires to make interactions between people and computers as simple, natural, and open-ended as interactions between people.
At the end of the day, these products are created to simplify the everyday lives of people. Some examples of interactive products include cell phones, computers, coffee machines, ATMs, the web, etc.
The components of Human-Computer Interaction
As previously mentioned, HCI includes three intersecting components: a human, a computer, and the interactions between them. Humans interact with the inferences of computers to perform various tasks. A computer interface is a medium that enables communication between any user and a computer. Much of HCI focuses on interfaces.
In order to build effective interfaces, we need to first understand the limitations and capabilities of both components. Humans and computers have different input-output channels.
- Long-term memory
- Short-term memory
- Sensory memory
- Visual perception
- Auditory perception
- Tactile perception
- Speech and voice
- Text input devices
- Speech recognition
- Display screens
- Auditory displays
- Printing abilities
Human-computer interaction puts a lot of importance on these intersecting features. How can we map human abilities to a computer’s abilities? How do humans and computers interact? There are several models that researchers have put forth.
Why Human-Computer Interaction is crucial to the advancement of technology
Research from companies like Adobe, Microsoft, and Facebook regularly translates into technological innovations that help create intuitive and usable interfaces for all kinds of industries. User interfaces will continue to adapt, and voice is just the start.
We are at the cusp of exciting advancements in VR, AR, Artificial Intelligence, and machine learning. The link between humans and computers is getting even stronger and will cover all our senses beyond vision, hearing, and touch.
We live in an age where science fiction is becoming reality and our relationship with technology is changing so much that it’s becoming increasingly likely we will be able to artificially create characteristics that we thought were distinctly human.
The relationships between Human-Computer Interaction and UX.
HCI is basically related to understanding user needs and designing a technological platform that fulfils user expectations. While experts design the system, the users can communicate with the system using the standard layout and prototyping.
While there are various aspects of how the HCI enhances the UX, the relationship between the two is quite straightforward. The basic relationship between human-computer interaction and human-computer interaction UX are:
- Develop a higher degree of usability and performance, enhancing the overall user experience.
- Offering a better sense of connectivity between the user and the system.
- Building a stronger brand value that is important for a business to flourish.
- Improving user experience and building improving loyalty.
- Developing a social media platform that offers smooth interaction and communication.
- The habit-forming technology that adapts to human experience and lifestyle for better support.
The impact of HCI design on UX
Modern user experience design has evolved through the research conducted on HCI design techniques. Areas such as interaction design, user-centred design, and micro-interactions have benefited from research to find the best engagement methodologies to improve product usability, functionality, and the delightful experience of the user. HCI design has helped influence UX design techniques.
Here are four design principles that have been influenced by HCI design:
Goal-driven design is fundamental to HCI design. It holds problem-solving as the most important factor in product design. The goal-driven design focuses on making the interactions between the user and the system as smooth as possible when achieving the end goal.
Usable applications create better user experiences. The usability ensures that the user will interact with the application by going through the core components such as learnability, efficiency, error rate, and error recovery of the application without getting stressed out. UX designers should familiarize themselves with the mental models of their applications so they can implement meaningful human-computer interface design for their intended user group.
Positive emotional responses
HCI design can help UX designers create positive emotions through colours, consistent elements, UX animations, and interactions.
Put humans first
In product design, designing for the correct set of users is necessary to create meaningful interactions between the computer and the human. Using personas, UX designers can create a delightful experience for their users. Emotions influence designers to create better product behaviour.
The use of user-friendly technology is key to attracting a higher base of loyal and lasting customers. The HCI is mainly focused on offering customers a smooth and seamless platform for communication and interaction, which is continuously evolving.
UX Design at Integrove
At Integrove we aim to design systems that bring positive changes in the market and society. Human-computer interaction reduces the gap between the user and machine understanding. With a holistic approach to design, integration, and application development, HCI serves as the root for the better development of our user experience.