Heuristic Evaluation Process
Heuristic evaluation is a quick method to evaluate any user interface (UI) by using a list of heuristics or guidelines. Ideally, two or three people independently evaluate the UI using the heuristics so that the usability issues that each person finds can be compared. This evaluation technique can be used throughout the development process, from early screen shots to fully implemented code, but it is a good idea to run heuristic evaluations early in the development process so that the UI can be redesigned.
For example, look at the entire UI using the consistency heuristic, and record where this principle is violated. When you have a list of all the consistency issues for the UI, make recommendations on how to address the issues that were identified.
More information about the heuristics described in this document can be found in Nielsen, Jakob, "Heuristic Evaluation," in Usability Inspection Methods, Jakob Nielsen and Robert L. Mack (editors), John Wiley & Sons, New York, New York, 1994. Additional heuristics, created by Microsoft for enhanced TV, include the following:
|Interference||The degree to which the interactive content obscures the content of the show itself.|
|Intrusiveness||The ability to interact with the interactive content while still being fully engaged in the show.|
|Applicability||The degree to which the interactive content is related to the content of the show.|