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hci g

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motor control

A branch of experimental psychology concerned with the study of human movement.

MUD(multi-user domain)

A persistent collaborative environment that is modeled on a geographic space.


A version of GOMS that is computationally realized in a tool called GLEAN. NGOMSL stands for Natural GOMS Language, and was developed by Kieras in the mid-1980s. More information can be found in Kieras (1997) and Kieras, et al. (1995).

nonfunctional requirements

Qualities of a system under development that are not directly related to its function, such as maintainability or reliability.

normative model

A model that identifies one or a few best ways for a system or person to behave. The model usually offers a criterion or criteria against which to evaluate behavior.


A system of symbols used in specialized fields to represent facts or values (as in a circuit diagram) or to give instructions (as in a programming language), usually subject to rules of combination and ordering (“syntax”). Although the symbols are discrete, there may be an admixture of analog features (relative placement of components in a circuit diagram, or layout of text in a program). This is a wider definition than that of Nelson Goodman’s (1968), for example, but it is more typical of conventional usage. Notations may be persistent (written down) or transient (spoken or otherwise fleeting). See also interaction language.


The “O” in “GOMS,” operators are the actions that the software allows the user to take. Operators can be defined at many different levels of abstraction, but most GOMS models define them at a concrete level, like button presses and menu selections.


A standard operator in a keystroke-level model (KLM), P represents the act of pointing, that is, moving a cursor with a mouse. It was empirically determined to average 1100 msec by Card, Moran, and Newell (1980b, 1983), but it can also be calculated with Fitts’ Law.

participatory design

A design movement primarily associated with Scandinavia, in which future users of the artifacts being designed participate in the original design work.

PERT chart

Program Evaluation Review Technique, a methodology developed by the U.S. Navy in the 1950s to manage the Polaris submarine missile program. A similar methodology, the Critical Path Method (CPM), which was developed for project management in the private sector at about the same time, has become synonymous with PERT, so that the technique is known by any variation on the names: PERT, CPM, or PERT/CPM. These methods are used in cognitive modeling to depict the parallel operation of perceptual, cognitive, and motor operators, with resource allocation and information-flow constraints.

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