Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Spotted: Measuring multitasking behavior...


Raquel Benbunan-Fich, Rachel F. Adler, Tamilla Mavlanova
Multitasking is the result of time allocation decisions made by individuals faced with multiple tasks. Multitasking research is important in order to improve the design of systems and applications. Since people typically use computers to perform multiple tasks at the same time, insights into this type of behavior can help develop better systems and ideal types of computer environments for modern multitasking users. In this paper, we define multitasking based on the principles of task independence and performance concurrency and develop a set of metrics for computer-based multitasking. The theoretical foundation of this metric development effort stems from an application of key principles of Activity Theory and a systematic analysis of computer usage from the perspective of the user, the task and the technology.

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