Michael Chisholm
Spring '98

Guidelines for UI design from

The Role of a Mental Model in Learning to Operate a Device

by David E. Kieras and Susan Bovair

1. The device model must allow users to reason about the device.
(Use words people can easily understand and icons that represent familiar objects.)

2. An incomplete or superficial device model is okay, as long as it allows users to effectively use the device.
(Don't worry if your interface doesn't reflect the way the software is actually implemented, as long as it isn't misleading.)

3. A device model is not always necessary.