Center for Multimedia Arts

  • Time: 11:30am-1:00pm, Thursday, August 30, 2007
  • Location: FedEx Institute of Technology, Room
  • Featured Speakers/Presentations:
    • Kevin Thorne, Training Manager for Autozone, Inc.
    • Michael Schmidt, the Director of the Center for Multimedia Arts (CMA)

Abstract:  The August WERN meeting will be an especially eventful one as it includes a guided tour of an important new facility under construction in the FedEx Institute of Technology and the dramatic story of Autozone’s search for an LMS provider. The event will take place Thursday, August 30, 2007 in the FedEx Institute of Technology, Room 405 from 11:30am-1:00pm.

The luncheon will feature Professor Michael Schmidt, the Director of the Center for Multimedia Arts (CMA), who will discuss the purposes and advantages of usability, particularly as they apply to software-based products and services. He will then share the plans-to-date for a usability lab and its mobile and remote testing equipment and solicit discussion from the meeting’s attendees. In addition, Kevin Thorne, Training Manager of Autozone, Inc., will share highlights of his search for an LMS vendor and the important lessons that were learned.

Supplemental Information about the CMA Talk

About the Presentation

Presently, the Center for Multimedia Arts is conducting an assessment of needs and interests in lab-based, mobile, and remote usability testing as well as in the larger scope of usability engineering and user-centered design. Using this feedback, the CMA will, during this fall ‘07 semester, purchase the appropriate equipment, construct the lab in room 214 of the FedEx Institute, staff the lab, provide training, establish researcher and external partner access to the lab, and begin offering usability services for hire.

Professor Michael Schmidt, the CMA’s director, will discuss the purposes and advantages of usability, particularly as they apply to software-based products and services. He will then share the plans-to-date for the lab and its mobile and remote testing equipment and solicit discussion from the meeting’s attendees.

About the Lab

The Usability Lab is a university and community-wide initiative of the Center for Multimedia Arts (CMA), the Office of the Provost/Advanced Learning Center TAF-funded IEL grant program, and the FedEx Institute of Technology.

About Usability

What is usability? Usability is the degree to which something – software, hardware or anything else – is easy to use and a good fit for the people who use it.

  • It is a quality or characteristic of a product.
  • It is whether a product is efficient, effective and satisfying for those who use it.
  • It is the name for a group of techniques developed by usability professionals to help create usable products.
  • And, it is a shorthand term for a process or approach to creating those products, also called user-centered design.

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