Expressing Use – Infrastructure Probes in Professional Environments

  • Jan Hess
  • Christian Doerner
  • Volkmar Pipek
  • Torben Wiedenhoefer
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 6654)


Cultural Probes have proven to be a successful approach for involving end users in exploring the context one might design for. Several studies made value of probes in domestic contexts to inspire the design of systems but the role of probes in business contexts is underexplored. In this paper we report on our experiences of adapting probes to be used as a method for a user-centered design process in work environments. Our probes, called Infrastructure Probes, are tools for self-documentation and reflection to enable employees to document usage, problems and suggestions related to their IT and workplace infrastructure. We evaluated the Infrastructure Probes in two field studies. In this paper we motivate the approach, discuss values and issues by introducing probes into a business context and reflect on the lessons we learnt.


Human Factors Empirical Study Probes Workplace Infrastructure Field Research Participatory Design 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jan Hess
    • 1
  • Christian Doerner
    • 2
  • Volkmar Pipek
    • 1
  • Torben Wiedenhoefer
    • 1
  1. 1.University of SiegenGermany
  2. 2.Carnegie Mellon UniversityUSA

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