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The use of customization tools to facilitate finding and re-finding of information in a computer desktop environment

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Title: The use of customization tools to facilitate finding and re-finding of information in a computer desktop environment
Author(s): Wang, Yi
Advisor(s): Fu, Wai-Tat
Department / Program: Institute of Aviation
Discipline: Human Factors
Degree Granting Institution: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Degree: M.S.
Genre: Thesis
Subject(s): customization tools finding and re-finding of information computer desktop environment
Abstract: We present results from three experiments that studied how people would use customization tools to help them offload information indexing to the external environment to augment finding and re-finding of information in a computer desktop environment. The results of the first experiment showed that participants were sensitive to the cost and benefit of customization. In general, participants performed more customization when the cost was low and when the benefit was high. Customization was also found to influence their information indexing strategies. The results of the second experiment showed that the use of customization tools helped participants develop a mix of internal (memory) and external (customization cues) indexing of information to adapt to dominance and dispersion structures of information needs and performance was significantly impacted by these information indexing strategies. The results of the third experiment showed that less convenient and efficient communication method and more help-needed questions respectively made participants ask their partners for less help and it thereby led to a lower proportion of optimal answers and a higher proportion of sub-optimal answers. As a result, it finally led to a worse performance. We concluded that there was much benefit for customization tools to be designed to adapt to different information environment in order to facilitate finding and re-finding information.
Issue Date: 2011-01-14
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2142/18267
Rights Information: Copyright 2010 Yi Wang
Date Available in IDEALS: 2011-01-14
Date Deposited: December 2
 

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