Why Should HCI professionals keep abreast of projects?

Why Should HCI professionals keep abreast of projects? Human computer interaction or HCI as it is commonly known refers to the discipline that is concerned with the design, the evaluation, and the implementation of interactive computing systems for human use.
At the same time, it is the study of the major phenomena influencing the interactive computing systems. As a field of inquiry, HCI moves with the trends in the technological landscape.
The best example of the evolution of HCI projects is seen in the emergence and evolution of personal mobile devices. A decade ago, nobody would have imagined that the current applications and use of smartphones were possible.
However, today, the smartphones have become more than just phones. Instead, they are part of many people’s lives to the extent that people are almost holistically dependent on the cameras, sensors, and mapping and location systems.
People use social media application among many other HCI features that have completely changed how they interact and even relate with their devices (IBM China Research Laboratory, 2015). In light of this description of HCI, this paper explains why it is important for HCI professionals to keep abreast with HCI trends.
In providing the explanation the paper will focus more on the IBM and Apple as two of the companies focusing on HCI intensive and extensive research. To start, Apple Inc. and IBM have been actively focused on similar HCI projects and this is specifically related to multi-channels programing and multi-modal interactive software.
This is to say that both companies have been increasingly focused on developing systems that operate seamlessly across multiple devices such that it becomes easy for the user to operate easily on the PC, tablet, and phone among other devices.
The multiple views help in enhancing the user experience considering that when used collectively, the views in the different devices are well synchronized. Apple has been applying the multi-modal interactive middleware in its various devices, including the MacBook, iPad, iPhone, and the watches (Winograd, 2016).
On the other hand, IBM has been actively working on large-scale projects such as multi-modal mobile banking with systems such as interaction manager (IM),
WebSphere EveryPlace Suite (WES), and WebSphere Business Component Composer (WSBCC).
https://www.research.ibm.com/beijing/projects/project2.html 67%
WebSphere EveryPlace Suite (WES), and WebSphere Business Component Composer (WSBCC).
In both cases, the focus has been on maintaining data synchronization and the session persistence (IBM China Research Laboratory, 2015). In the following few paragraphs, the paper will focus more on looking into the differences between IBM HCI projects and Apple HCI projects with more interest being on why keeping abreast with HCI trends is important.
The major reason for keeping abreast with HCI project trends is the need to remain competitive (IBM Research, 2013). In the case of Apple Inc., HCI projects contribute in making the company more competitive in the production of consumer electronics.
On the other hand, IBM must struggle to remain competitive in the HCI requirements of the industrial computer products. As research indicates, the world of technology is presumably the most fluid industry.
Experts in the field have indicated that new technologies hit the market within every eighteen months and that is just on average. New technologies do not necessarily mean that companies such as IBM and Apple are producing computers with new chips.
Rather, it is the way that these computers are designed to interact with the users that matters. For instance, every September Apple launches a new iPhone with improvements on older models.
Terms such as larger screen faster processing speed, and more security features are commonly used in the description of the new devices. Such descriptions indicate the important role that human computer interactions play in all new devices and as every device is improved, the HCI designs change.
In order to remain competitive therefore, the players in the industry must maintain robust research centers. IBM research is good example of a HCI research center that tracks trends in HCI projects.
The other reason is to keep improving the user experience (IBM Research, 2013). The main requirement for the creation of great user experience is meeting the exact needs for the usage of the product.
In the creation of great user experience, there are fundamental differences between IBM HCI projects and Apple HCI projects. IBM majorly focuses on technologies for organizational use and these include banking systems among others.
Consequently, the enhancement of user experience does not only pertain to the end users who include the customers of the banks. Rather, it includes both the end-user customers and the organizations for which the technologies are created.
Serving two completely different categories of clients means the HCI projects created by IBM are ideally more complex than those created by Apple. Apple specifically focuses on the enhancement of the user experience of the end-user consumers of the tablets, apple watches and all other products that the company produces.
In the simplest understanding of the user experience complex, IBM HCI projects may require more customization than Apple HCI projects and this marks a major point of contrast. The other factor is the improvement in human productivity as well as the efficiency (IBM Research, 2013).
It is based on the understanding that Apple and IBM study the way people think and the way they feel when using particular digital technologies, they ensure that the HCI products are designed to be delightful and easier to use for the specific target markets.
The ease of use and the delight associate with the new systems them enhances productivity and efficiency. When Apple focuses on human productivity from a general basis, IBM has to focus more on optimization from the perspective of the organization.
IBM also covers case-by-case basis since organizations have different business models and different technological requirements, which means that the demand of HCI varies greatly. IBM may require focusing more on people’s understanding than Apple does but in both case the ultimate goal is to ensure the improved human productivity and efficiency.
The last factor is to give the users more control over the system while at the same time maintaining integrity of the systems (IBM Research, 2013). Current HCI projects both at IBM and at Apple are focused on the creation of more natural interfaces. The implications of this are that the users have more control over their systems and user interfaces. However, there is also the need to maintain the integrity of the systems especially when considering that the HCI requirements are different at both the organizational level and at the individual level. It marks a major difference between IBM which focuses on both the organizational and individual levels of HCI and Apple which focuses more on the individual level HCI.
In conclusion, this write-up focuses on HCI projects by both IBM and Apple. The paper focuses on explaining why it is important for HCI professionals to keep abreast with HCI trends. The need to keep up with competition, enhance human productivity and efficiency, and the improvement of user experience are among the reasons why keeping abreast with HCI trends is important. Notably, Apple and IBM focus on different target markets and this is why there are slight differences in the HCI projects for the two companies.

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