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Tuesday, 15 October 2002, 12:00AM

The Computer Science of Everyday Things

Professor Harold Thimbleby

Moore's Law predicts substantial, sustained improvement in computing power. Yet while the technology gets better and better, the usability of 'everyday things' is low (video recorders being a notorious example). Obsolescence, a symptom of Moore's Law, hides flawed design: poor products are replaced rather than fixed. The poor quality of the computer science of everyday things is continually eclipsed by the hope for fixing today's problems with tomorrow's developments. This lecture shows that computer science can improve usability with ease. Improvement will be essential when ethical and environmental issues become, as they will, unavoidable design criteria.

professor-harold-thimbleby

Harold Thimbleby is professor of computer science at Swansea University where he established the Future Interaction Technology Lab. His passion is designing dependable computer systems to accommodate human error. He has been a Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit award holder and a Royal Society Leverhulme Trust Senior Research Fellow. He has also contributed to the Encyclopedia Brittanica and was Gresham Professor of Geometry between 2001 and 2004.

All of Professor Thimbleby's previous lectures may be accessed here.

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15 October 2002

The Computer Science of Everyday Things
Professor Harold Thimbleby

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