Interactive Computing Systems

MAPi Doctoral Programme (2014/15)


The Interactive Computing Systems course is offered as part of the 2013/14 edition of the Joint doctoral programme in Computer Science of Universidade do Minho, Universidade de Aveiro and Universidade do Porto (MAP-I). The course covers topics in the area of Human-Computer Interaction, with a particular emphasis on the Engineering of Interactive Computing Systems. At the end of this course, students should be able to understand the opportunities and challenges raised by the continued evolution of interaction technology.

According to the ACM SIGCHI Curricula, Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) is "a discipline concerned with the design, evaluation and implementation of interactive computing systems for human use and with the study of major phenomena surrounding them". The term ’Computing systems’ is used here in a broad sense to denote from systems consisting of a single user interacting with a single computer to spaces enhanced with ubiquitous technology to support the activities or needs of multiple users. Technological development, in particular in the areas of embedded and mobile systems, means that the interface between humans and computers is harder than ever to define while at the same time we become more and more dependent on technology.

Objectives and Learning Outcomes

This course approaches HCI from an Engineering perspective, drawing on the background of the team. As explained above, the objective is to present students with in-depth treatment of a number of selected topics. Upon successful completion of this curricular unit, students should be able to:

  • formulate UI hypothesis and devise validation experiments, discussing and applying different evaluation techniques;
  • explain the advantages and limitations of describing interactive computing systems with models, as a way to abstract from the systems’ complexity and to reason about their properties;
  • discuss the main 3D interfaces available as well as their main applications and limitations, the guidelines for their development, and present the main challenges in 3D and Natural User Interfaces applications;
  • identify which types of context information, context-sensitive procedures, and interaction techniques might be realistically supported given the limitations of the technology and the specificities of a particular interaction scenario;
  • discuss the advantages, limitations and challenges of interaction through public displays, the role of the shared nature of public displays in user engagement, and the key interaction techniques with them;
  • explain the concepts of Lean UX and Model-based User Interface development and contrast their roles in developing interactive computing systems.

r13 - 16 Feb 2014 - 16:27:44 - BeatrizSantos
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