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Sharing Usability Information: A Communication Paradox

Sharing Usability Information: A Communication Paradox
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Author(s): Paula M. Bach (Pennsylvania State University, USA), Hao Jiang (Pennsylvania State University, USA) and John M. Carroll (Pennsylvania State University, USA)
Copyright: 2012
Pages: 15
Source title: Computer Engineering: Concepts, Methodologies, Tools and Applications
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Information Resources Management Association (USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61350-456-7.ch507

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Abstract

In this chapter, we investigate the social and communication challenges surrounding usability information sharing. Our objective is to investigate a communication paradox: software development teams, consisting of usability engineers, software developers, and project managers, chose communication channels to use every day that are not channels they prefer to use. This paradox was discovered in a survey and explored further in interviews with software development teams. Results indicated that challenges with common ground and work coupling affect the extent to which the affordances of different communication channels can be taken advantage of. The value of this study highlights and explains the paradox from a time-space perspective and provides insight to usability information sharing among software engineering teams. Future work includes investigating the effect of social capital on communication channel preference along with understanding how important usability issues can be discussed in complex teams.

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