Menu Selection

Assignment 2: Menu Selection

name

CIS 524 – Computer Interaction and Design

Professor Moses Cowan

Introduction

The menu-driven interface makes it easy for users to access information, provides them with a menu list of choices that they can select to navigate from one place to another within a website or software program. Menu-driven interface is not only used with desktop or laptop computer they are also used in everyday life with ATMs and kiosks machines. The menu-driven interface provides graphical menus that do not require users to memorize the commands making it easy to navigate through and use. Menu-driven interfaces also require very little processing power and quickly load on most devices. However, there can by a disadvantage with the menu-driven interface at times it can be difficult for a user to find a command if they do not know where the control is located in the menu. This only happens with more complex systems that include multiple lists, which is not very often.

Menu Selection

Evaluate the user dialog strategies used by a menu-driven interface.

The information system interface designs are being dominated by the use of menu driven systems the majority of systems rely on the user’s interactions with the menus with the primary dialogue structure. The user dialogue strategies used by a menu-driven interface can appear inmultiple ways programs directed, the operator-led discussions and are two. The program or application led dialogue has more control over the user interface and how it used by the user. This user interface will prompt the user with menu system that has a limited number of choices to select from, or a form filling representation where the application will display on-screen options to fill in text fields or captions that indicate what data should be entered in each field, guiding the user from one phase to the next.

The operator or user-directed dialogue performs the task in a sequence that is determined by the user. This means that the user enters a command, and the application shows that user’s request. There are also standards for the dialogue design they are grouped into several categories (feedback, suitability, and user control) all of which benefit the user. The feedback type provides the user with and understanding of the system so that their tasks are made easier. It limits both the scope and content of the action being carried out by the user. It also minimizes the user’s need to consult any user manuals or external sources of information, thereby avoiding confusion of the user.

Suitability deals with the fact that the user can receive information to perform the tasks that are applicable to what they’re doing. Consideration is given to the context, type, and scope of information to be presented to the user, and the input to and output from the dialogue should fit the task at hand. User control is the degree to which the exchange permits the user to have control over itself (A Comparative Study Of Three Ict Network Programs Using …(n.d.)).The properly designed dialogue allows the user to have control without burdening them with activities not related to the user’s task. The user should be able to control the speed at which they interact with the dialogue to work at the pace their comfortable with.

Determine why menu-driven interfaces continue to be popular in the modern computing age.

The menu driven methods continue to be popular because it has proven to be an alternative to the traditional forms of retrieving information. Menu driven systems are the essential components of the modern graphical user interfaces, for desktop applications or web applications. Menu driven interfaces are not just accessible to computers; they are also popular with cell phones. The main purpose of menu driven interfaces is customer satisfaction. This is why researchers continue to investigate various ways of improving the features of menu design. The 2D and 3D menu designs can display more items and provide a natural and intuitive interface. With the use of cell phones the amount of available space is limited; however, cell phones benefit with the use of 3D menus.

The popularity continues with computers use because the menu driven interfaces device speeds up the work process, the user does not need to learn complex commands or language, they’re easy to use and provide step by step instructions. Even with the screen size difference between computers and cell phones it does not change. Users can open multiple parallel windows on a desktop without affecting the process; this type of task is not active on handheld devices given the small screen space available. Another difference between computers and handheld devices is the input method employed. With handheld device, the use of pens and touch screens are the most common for input, whereas a keyboard, mouse and voice are utilized on desktop models. The difference between the device types doesn’t reduce the need for the menu interface of the user.

Suggest at least three (3) strategies for making menu-driven interfaces visually appealing in the modern computing environment.

Applying graphically rich, seductive color to a menu-driven interface can make a sophisticated technology accessible to a younger and older audience. The expectations of user interfaces are for it to be easy on the eyes, easy to use and seem to reach out and grab them. Using different color scheme can be designed for use with each page or sections of the page making it easy for the user to recall a page they may want to revisit while accessing the interface (ICM. (n.d.)). It also makes the design more memorable by a user because they could remember the page color. The color process in the design is necessary when incorporating the multiple ways it can be used.

Another design that would make the interface more appealing is with the use selective designing. Selective designing gives the user the ability to reconstruct their web interface page to accomplish better their needs. The user would be able to place the icons or links the users on a regular basis in a format that easy for them to view and access. This also gives the user control over the interface making it more of a personal design. When users feel that they are in control of the outcome of the process, it makes them comfortable with using the interface.

Next would be the design of the characters used in the interface. The design would ensure that the size of the fonts is easy to read so that the user would not strain their eyes when reading the information. The styling of the fonts would also matter, the design should consist plain, non-cursive, slanted fonts. The color of the font can also add to the visual effect of the interface, depending on the background color having the wrong color of the fonts make it hard to read and understand. However with the right background and color of the fonts the interface would be appealing to anyone using it.

Suggest alternatives for menu-driven interface design and explain how these alternatives can be designed to eventually replace all menu-driven interfaces.

Conclusion

  • A process for replacing menu-driven interfaces already exists, in theory, however, it is not easy to implement. Command driven software is a tool that could be used to replace the menu-driven interface it is often more flexible but it is more difficult to learn. With command driven software programs can be designed to run the menu-driven interface steps from start to finish. This means that each step from a menu-driven interface could be incorporatedinto batch job or script process for everything done on a computer. This process would take a very long time and be extremely hard to do. It would take a team of engineers and software developers to complete this type of process; they would need to have access to every type of system and application created to run on all systems. This design process would most likely be very expensive to create.

References

  • The use of menu-driven interfaces has changed the way people think of and used computers, and more people fell as though they are capable using computers, tablets, laptop and smart phones because of menu-driven interfaces. The menu-driven interfaces have become so common that they are used in everyday activities by people without thinking about the process; ATMs, self-checkout, navigational systems in their cars, and placing food orders at kiosk systems. The fact is that menu-driven interfaces are here to stay and to become more relied on by society. Most of today’s electronic systems; TV’s, DVD players, and gaming systems, etc. have some form of menu-driven interface design to assist the users in some way.

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ICM. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://lorraineux.com/icm.html

Ju, B., & Gluck, M. (Aug 2005). User-process model approach to improve user interface usability. Journal of the American Society for Information Science & Technology, Vol. 56 Issue 10, p1098-1112. 15p.

Kim, J. K., & J., S. G. (Apr 2011). Menu Design for Computers and Cell Phones: Review and Reappraisal. International Journal of Human-Computer Interaction, Vol. 27 Issue 4, p383-404. 22p. 2 Charts.

Westerman, S. J. (1997). Individual Difference in the Use of Command Line and Menu Computer Interfaces. International Journal of Human-Computer Interaction, Vol. 9 Issue 2, p183. 16p.