SUMI

21 Nov 2003 - 9:50am
10 years ago
2 replies
667 reads
Narey, Kevin
2004

We are considering using this tool as part of usability testing on our
systems.

Has anyone on the list used it and seen positive or negative results?

http://www.ucc.ie/hfrg/questionnaires/sumi/

Thanks

KN

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Comments

29 Jan 2004 - 2:32am
mYamamoto at jp...
2004

Since no body answered this interesting question, I will response with some
words.

SUMI is a known tool in almost only British to measure the subjective
measure of the interactive system.
Since it costs, it is easily imagine that it is not used by many
developers.
Also I wonder how many people would still feel happy after answering 50
questions on this and that userinterface.
I heard some Japanese usability specialist thought to use this kit, but
anymore.
------------------------------------
Masayasu Yamamoto

IT and Communications Systems Security
IT Services and Innovation
TUV Rheinland Japan Ltd.

"Narey, Kevin"
<Kevin.Narey at Geda
s.co.uk> To
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ractiondesigners. [ID Discuss] SUMI
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11/22/2003 12:50
AM

We are considering using this tool as part of usability testing on our
systems.

Has anyone on the list used it and seen positive or negative results?

http://www.ucc.ie/hfrg/questionnaires/sumi/

Thanks

KN

**********************************************************************
gedas united kingdom limited
Registered in England no. 1371338

This email and any files transmitted with it are confidential
and it may be privileged.

It is intended solely for the use of the individual or entity to
whom it is addressed.

If you have received this in error, please contact the sender
and delete the material immediately.
**********************************************************************
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29 Jan 2004 - 10:39am
Rao, Malini
2004

I think this is a very interesting topic. Recently, a Biochemistry PhD
turned software developer in my company told me that I should take his
opinion because "usability" (and he meant not just evaluation but the entire
spectrum of user experience) was such a "subjective science" (!!!) anyway. I
remember feeling some frustration and even spent some time looking for
empirical methods used in the field. Now that I read about SUMI and also
other efforts to "automate" usability evaluations and even user interfaces,
I personally think it is a good thing that usability and user experience is
a soft science where human judgement (both from the end-user and the
evaluator) in specific contexts is an irreplaceable and invaluable aspect of
this "science".

While I think the SUMI approach is quite interesting and somehow quantifies
"satisfaction" on a tested scale, I think (just opinions here!) it has some
drawbacks. I can see this as a great tool for a third party comparing 2
products in a market; a company with no UI team trying ot figure out the
weakest areas before hiring a usability consultant to delve into details in
that area or even for internal benchmarking and setting usability goals
(broad ones such as "we have to work on our weakest point - Affect" or more
specific like " Our next version will aim to earn ___ points in terms of
learnability amounting to a ___% improvement") However, isn't this still a
bit too broad and a very small value addition.... In most cases, usability
experts can arrive at these broad conclusions by spending some time with the
software or carrying out a heuristic evaluation. Better still, a few
interviews or even shadowing a user may result in the same"discoveries". I
think what these exercises additionally provide that methods like the SUMI
questionnaire don't, are specific instances in the product backing up those
discoveries. Also, almost always in the case of methods like SUMI, it has to
be an after-the-fact type analysis.... after something has been built and
sent to users to use for a while when users have already loved or loathed
your latest changes and retracing and correction is more difficult from the
development point of view.

I am also interested in understanding if the SUMI scale can be adjusted for
different types of software targeted for different users in different
contexts...For instance, a high-end user like a "data wrangler" will
consider a steeper learning curve acceptable and even a not-so great looking
interface and may value Control and efficiency more but the same is not true
for a CEO/CFO of company trying to get a quick overview of say the spend.

I think user experience can at best be guided by principles and standards
and even so I think a one-size-fits-all approach to an evaluation tool or a
UI solution will most likely not work.

- Malini

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