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Yue Pan & Erik Stolterman Indiana University Bloomington, IN, USA {panyue, estolter}@indiana.edu Pattern Language and HCI: Experiences and Expectations
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Pattern Language and HCI: Expectations and Experiences

Jun 28, 2015

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Pattern Language (PL) has been researched and developed in HCI research since the mid-80s. Our research was initiated by the question why something like PL can create such enthusiasm and interest over the years, while at the same time not be more widespread and successful? In this paper, we examine the experiences and expectations that HCI researchers who have been involved in PL research have had and still have when it comes to PL. Based on the literature review and interview studies, we provide some overall reflections and several possible directions on the use of PL in HCI.
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  • 1. Yue Pan & Erik StoltermanIndiana University Bloomington, IN, USA{panyue, estolter}@indiana.eduPattern Language and HCI:Experiences and Expectations

2. Pattern Language in Architecture Design 3. Pattern Language in Architecture DesignPattern Language Problem Context Forces Solution 4. Pattern Language in Interaction Design 5. Pattern Language in Social Studies 6. Pattern Language in Ubiquitous Computing 7. Pattern Language in Ethnography Research 8. research question1:why has Pattern Language as an object of studycreated such enthusiasm and interest over theyears? 9. research question2:why has Pattern Language as a tool not been morewidespread and successful? 10. Interviews 11. interviewWe sent email to 24 PL experts.14 experts replied.Interviews were conducted by email orSkype.4 experts are working for industry.10 experts are working for academia. PL experts 12. interviewInterview questions:1. Peoples initial engagement with PL;2. Rewards and Challenges of developing PL;3. Why PL not been more successful;4. Future of PL in HCI field. 13. Findings 14. Challenges of Developing PLDemand Extensive EffortsR3: First of all, IT IS AN IMMENSE AMOUNTOF WORK!!! First you harvest ideas forpotential patterns, then you seek the evidence(examples where it was used), and then youstart writing the first draft, then iterate andpublish. Do that 100+ times and it will cost youmore than a year of your life! 15. Challenges of Developing PLApplying PL in Real WorldR3: I think there is one area where the PLresearch is still weak and that is the area ofevidence in patterns. Most patterns,including mine, use common sense toargue that they are good solutions. It wouldbe good to do more research and see towhat extend they really work. 16. R10: In contrast, computer scientists andprogrammers in particular are verycomfortable with formalizations. So its nosurprise that patterns has had success inprogramming where you have things likeUML.Designers on the other hand resistformalizations, particularly descriptive onesrather than generative or process-orientedones like design methods.Challenges of Developing PLFormalization 17. Insight:PL is NOT easy to use. 18. Pattern LanguageAdvantages of Using PLEducationR8: As part of teacher I do. I useJennifer Tidwells book in my courseInteracting Form to teach graphicstudents. 19. Advantages of Using PLRepresenting KnowledgeR3: Patterns could be a great way tocapture design solutions and link it tocharacteristics of the task, user or anyother part of the context of use. And so Istarted writing my first patterns, trying tofind out how I could use the patternformat to capture design knowledge. 20. Pattern LanguageAdvantages of Using PLDesign ThinkingR2: (PL) Help people perceive the world.PL opens up peoples perceptions andawareness that people may not realize.Creating PL is also interesting. Start fromnothing, observation, synthesis somethingand bring it into very clear. 21. Insight:Use PL to inform design thinking. 22. PL Expectations and FutureCreating PL rather than PatternsR1: One sort of weakness in designpatterns, especially if it is done by multipledistributed people in a bottom-up fashion, isa lack of a coherent pattern language. 23. Insight:Develop PL rather than patterns. 24. PL Expectations and FutureMore EvaluationR6: More research examining thepracticalities of using PLs within actualdesign processes, ethnographic andempirical studies are needed. 25. Insight:Evaluate PL in a real design setting. 26. Discussion 27. Pattern LanguageDiscussionWe study and evaluate PL as1. A tool and methodological approach to learn aboutother methods and tools in general.2. A catalyst to understand problems, solutions, valueswithin design and research process. 28. Design Methods Research @IUYue Pan & Erik StoltermanIndiana University, USA{panyue, estolter}@indiana.eduNSFThanks!