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HCI Principles for the Web

The same basic HCI principles that govern software interface design apply just as effectively to designing Web sites and Web applications. Just as a badly designed user interface can doom a software product despite its complex functionality or the power of its technology, a poorly designed Web interface, despite its impressive graphics, can propel the user to another site with one click of the mouse. As user satisfaction has increased in importance, the need for reliable Web usability design methods has become more critical.

As the following chapters will demonstrate, the same usability design principles developed for designing user interfaces also apply to the design of usable Web sites. These principles include user-centered design with early focus on the user, early human factors input, task environment analysis, iterative design, and continuous testing. Let's examine some of these principles as they relate to new media technology on the Web.


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