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User-Centered Design and Evaluation of Interface Enhancements to the Semantic MediaWiki

By Frederik Pfisterer, Markus Nitsche, Anthony Jameson, and Catalin Barbu (2008)

Proceedings of the CHI 2008 workshop on Semantic Web User Interaction, Florence, Italy.


Semantic wikis are a lightweight form of semantic technology that can enable more effective and active use of systems developed within the already popular wiki paradigm. But the goal of making the use and authoring of semantic wikis easy and attractive for a broad range of users raises several interaction design challenges: How can users unfamiliar with semantic technologies be helped and motivated to specify the many necessary typed links in a way that results in a useful web of annotations? And how can visitors of the resulting pages be helped to make maximal use of the added semantic information? With this case study, we discuss work conducted since the beginning of 2007 on the user-centered design and testing of interface enhancements for the Semantic MediaWiki developed at AIFB, focusing on their application to scientific pages adopted from Wikipedia. We discuss, with reference to specific interface examples, how usability challenges were addressed in the initial conceptualization of the interface enhancements, how user requirements were anticipated, and how the interface enhancements were iteratively tested and refined. We then describe an intermediate evaluation involving 42 participants and sketch further work currently in progress. We conclude with comments on some general lessons learned from this work concerning the application of user-centered design in the semantic web area.


Paper:  [PDF File]

BibTeX entry

  year = {2008},
  author = {{Pfisterer}, Frederik and
            {Nitsche}, Markus and
            {Jameson}, Anthony and
            {Barbu}, Catalin},
  title = {User-Centered Design and Evaluation of Interface Enhancements to the {S}emantic
  booktitle = {Proceedings of the {CHI~2008} workshop on Semantic Web User Interaction},
  address = {Florence, Italy}}