The opportunistic dynamics of the design process: some implications for HCI

Raymonde Guindon

Seminar on People, Computers, and Design
Stanford University April 3, 1991


Raymonde will summarize a research project she did while at the Human-Computer Interface and Software Technology programs at MCC. The results of this project just appeared in IJMMS and Human-Computer Interaction journals.


Raymonde Guindon has a Ph.D. in cognitive psychology from the University of Colorado at Boulder. She then worked at MCC for 5 years in the Human-Computer Interface and Software Technology programs. She is now completing a Master degree in computer science at Stanford and working with Penny Nii on a user interface and visualization tools for a knowledge-based system to support the early stages of software design. Abstract: Contrary to some popular prescriptive model of sofware design, such as the top-down or waterfall model, the early stages of software design have been observed to be opportunistic. I will show that the opportunistic design behaviors are not noise or resulting from bad design practices or performance breakdowns. Rather they are an intrinsic consequence of the ill-structuredness of early design problems and they are beneficial to the design process. Implications for HCI will be noted. References: Guindon, R. (1990). Designing the design process: Exploiting opportunistic throughts. Human-Computer Interaction, 5, 305-344. Guindon, R. (1990). Knowledge exploited by experts during software system design. International Journal of Man-Machine Studies, 33, 279-304.


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