Web Site Design for Interactive and Animated Geo-spatial Information

Web Site Design for Interactive and Animated Geo-spatial Information

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The research objective for this study was to bring together current guidelines, standards, and procedures for the design, evaluation, and implementation of a highly interactive and animated, user friendly, micro geo-spatial web site specifically designed for public use. A micro geo-spatial web site focuses on a limited and predetermined geo-spatial environment and combines the user friendly navigation features of public geo-web sites (e.g. Google and Yahoo Map) with the more difficult to navigate sites that offer users the ability to view and download a larger variety of geo-spatial information (e.g. USGS and TIGER). The Loess Hills landform was selected as the subject matter of this prototype web site because of its limited size and topographically distinctive landmass, its close proximity to the University of Nebraska at Omaha, and for the wealth and availability of free geo-spatial information. The efficient, effective, and satisfactory retrieval of geo-spatial information from the resulting web site was evaluated by means of a user centered design strategy that continually measured usability throughout the design process. Usability was evaluated by the observation and response of participatory test subjects who agreed to navigate and browse the experimental web site while performing task oriented evaluation trials. Knowledge gained from these trials was incorporated into the continuous redesign of the structure and content of the prototype web site. Test subject evaluations were very favorable towards the design, content, and display of geo-spatial information. However, all of the test subjects experienced navigational difficulties, which appear to be inherent in the display of complex geo-graphical information. Specifically, test subjects had difficulties navigating through layers of graphical geo-spatial data while performing task evaluation trials. These navigational problems could not be overcome with additional navigation instructions and design changes.W.F. Schwertley. instructions could be replaced with instructional balloons. Balloons with helpful a€žhow toa€Ÿ information would instantly pop up on the usera€Ÿs display when the mouse cursor moved over a button or layer. For example, if the useranbsp;...

Title:Web Site Design for Interactive and Animated Geo-spatial Information
Author:W.F. Schwertley
Publisher:ProQuest - 2007


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