ON THE REAPPORTIONMENT OF COGNITIVE RESPONSIBILITIES IN INFORMATION SYSTEMS (USER INTERFACE).
AuthorFJELDSTAD, OYSTEIN DEVIK.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractAs the number of information system users increases, we are witnessing a related increase in the complexity and the diversity of their applications. The increasing functional complexity amplifies the degree of functional and technical understanding required of the user to make productive use of the application tools. Emerging technologies, increased and varied user interests and radical changes in the nature of applications give rise to the opportunity and necessity to re-examine the proper apportionment of cognitive responsibilities in human-system interaction. We present a framework for the examination of the allocation of cognitive responsibilities in information systems. These cognitive tasks involve skills associated with the models and tools that are provided by information systems and the domain knowledge and problem knowledge that are associated with the user. The term cognitor is introduced to refer to a cognitive capacity for assuming such responsibilities. These capacities are resident in the human user and they are now feasible in information system architectures. Illustrations are given of how this framework can be used in understanding and assessing the apportionment of responsibilities. Implications of shifting and redistributing cognitive task from the system-user environment to the system environment are discussed. Metrics are provided to assess the degree of change under alternative architectures. An architecture for the design of alternative responsibility allocations, named Reapportionment of Cognitive Activities, (RCA), is presented. The architecture describes knowledge and responsibilities associated with facilitating dynamic allocation of cognitive responsibilities. Knowledge bases are used to support and describe alternative apportionments. RCA illustrates how knowledge representations, search techniques and dialogue management can be combined to accommodate multiple cooperating cognitors, each assuming unique roles, in an effort to share the responsibilities associated with the use of an information system. A design process for responsibility allocation is outlined. Examples of alternative responsibility allocation feasible within this architecture are provided. Cases implementing the architecture are described. We advocate treating the allocation of cognitive responsibilities as a design variable and illustrate through the architecture and the cases the elements necessary in reapportioning these responsibilities in information systems dialogues.
Degree ProgramManagement Information Systems