Interface Design - who does it?

Subject: Interface Design - who does it?
From: Ruth Glaser <ruthg -at- GORETEK -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 4 Sep 1996 09:26:44 -0500

Your help please--

My company is in the process of defining development team roles for our
upcoming project. There are more roles than people, so we will all be
called on to contribute in multiple roles.

Without going into great detail, some of the roles we've identified include:
Application Engineer
Project Manager
Integration manager

One role that we haven't defined, but clearly need is that of Interface
Designer. I'm trying to stress to the team that this is more than a graphic
artist; rather it is someone with knowledge of cognitive psychology, etc.
My suspicion is that a number of technical writers participate to some degree
in interface development.

Since we will not be hiring specifically for this position at this time, I
was hoping some of you could share experiences about who does this in your

Perhaps you could help define the role of an interface designer.
What activities do they participate in? (usability testing, rapid prototyping?)
What special skill set do they need? (human factors experience, design
skills?) What are their deliverables? (the interface, etc.?)

Any help in this area is greatly appreciated. (BTW, we have a very technically
oriented product architect here who believes he is best suited for this role.
I, however, maintain that someone with a more user-centered perspective is
better suited - e.g. technical writer. Your thoughts?)

Ruth T. Glaser
ruthg -at- goretek -dot- com
Ruth T. Glaser e-mail: ruthg -at- goretek -dot- com
Goretek Data Systems, Inc. Phone: (612) 639-5043
900 Long Lake Road #151 Fax: (612) 639-5090
New Brighton, MN 55112 WWW:

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