Reflections on lexicographical user research

Tarp S. (2009)


The last decades have seen a growing interest in theoretical and practical problems related to lexicographical user research. Starting with a discussion of the concept of lexicographically relevant user needs, this contribution analyses, utilising the lexicographical function theory, various types of needs to be taken into account when doing this kind of research. It then discusses the positive and negative aspects of the various methods applied, i.e. questionnaires, interviews, observation, protocols, experiments, tests, and log files. With reference to both lexicographical and sociological literature, it raises a number of problems common to most of the lexicographical user research conducted until now and recommends the application of scientific methods in future research. Finally, it proposes a number of alternative methods in order to obtain more knowledge about the real user needs.

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