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The design of sonically-enhanced widgets

By S.A. Brewster


This paper describes the design of user-interface widgets that include non-speech sound. Previous research has shown that the addition of sound can improve the usability of human–computer interfaces. However, there is little research to show where the best places are to add sound to improve usability. The approach described here is to integrate sound into widgets, the basic components of the human–computer interface. An overall structure for the integration of sound is presented. There are many problems with current graphical widgets and many of these are difficult to correct by using more graphics. This paper presents many of the standard graphical widgets and describes how sound can be added. It describes in detail usability problems with the widgets and then the non-speech sounds to overcome them. The non-speech sounds used are earcons. These sonically-enhanced widgets allow designers who are not sound experts to create interfaces that effectively improve usability and have coherent and consistent sounds

Topics: QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science, QA76 Computer software
Publisher: 'Elsevier BV'
Year: 1998
DOI identifier: 10.1016/S0953-5438(98)00028-9
OAI identifier:

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