Supporting End Users to Be Co-designers of Their Tools
Nowadays very different people use computer systems for their daily working activities, but also for fun and entertainment or only to satisfy their information needs. Designers are doing their best to create computer systems that work as end users expect, but it must be honestly admitted that they often fail and end users have all rights to complain. In order to improve this situation and create better systems, participatory approaches have been proposed, which involve end users in the design and development process. However, this solution is not without flaws, mainly because timing and ways of users’ participation are very critical. In this paper we discuss our approach to create working systems, which is based on a star model of the software life cycle that drives system design, development and evolution, since software design and development is seen as an evolutive process, driven by end-users activities in the real life. System development does not end with its first release; it is experimented by its end users and further evolved on the basis of their feedbacks. End users are truly engaged in the software life cycle as co-designers and experimenters of the software tools they will use in various application domains.
KeywordsDesign Methodology Star Life Cycle Co-Evolution of Users and Systems End-User Development
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