Austin Henderson

Austin Henderson's 45-year career in Human-Computer Interaction includes user interface research and architecture at MIT’s Lincoln Laboratory, Bolt Beranek and Newman, Xerox Research (both PARC and EuroPARC), Apple Computer, and Pitney Bowes, as well as strategic industrial design with Fitch and his own Rivendel Consulting & Design and Scalable Conversations. Austin has built both commercial and research applications in many areas. These applications, and their development with users, have grounded his analytical work, which has included the nature of computation-based socio-technical systems, the interaction of people with the technology in those systems, and the practices and tools of their development and use, particularly the conversations that surround them. The primary goals of his work have been to better meet user needs, both by improving system development to better anticipate those needs, and by improving system capability to enable users themselves to better respond to unanticipated needs when they arise in a rich and changing world.

Stories by Austin Henderson

This article explains what conceptual models are and describes the value of developing a conceptual model of a software application before designing its user interface. Conceptual Model: a Model for Users’ Mental Model A conceptual model of an application is the model of the application that the designers want users to understand.  By using the…