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Usability and User-Centered Design in Scientific Software Development
January/February 2009 (vol. 26 no. 1)
pp. 96-102
Catriona Macaulay, University of Dundee
David Sloan, University of Dundee
Xinyi Jiang, University of Dundee
Paula Forbes, University of Dundee
Scott Loynton, University of Dundee
Jason R. Swedlow, University of Dundee
Peter Gregor, University of Dundee
Usability is a growing issue for developers of scientific software. Scientists seeking software to support scientific discovery and funding bodies seeking better return on investment increase the pressure to produce scientific software that has an impact beyond a limited set of users (that is, scientists in a single lab). However, developing software for even a limited set of users is challenging, and commercial design techniques are rarely available for scientific software development in academic settings. Lessons learned from a case study in which developers integrated usability and user-centered design (UCD) methods into an image-data-management software suite for cell biologists might be useful to others working in similar contexts.

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Index Terms:
design methodologies, user interfaces, user-centered design
Citation:
Catriona Macaulay, David Sloan, Xinyi Jiang, Paula Forbes, Scott Loynton, Jason R. Swedlow, Peter Gregor, "Usability and User-Centered Design in Scientific Software Development," IEEE Software, vol. 26, no. 1, pp. 96-102, Jan.-Feb. 2009, doi:10.1109/MS.2009.27
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