I'm an undergraduate/Masters/PhD student at the University of Wherever, and I'm doing a project/research on ___________. Does anyone out there know of any papers discussing ___________?

(P.S.: Please reply via email, as I don't read this group regularly...)

Thanks in advance!


Believe it or not, this is the most controversial question in the faq. There are two schools of thought on the matter...
Here's the stock answer (written by Gary Perlman <perlman@cis.ohio-state.edu>):
Thanks to the efforts of many volunteers interested in
human factors in computing, human-computer interaction,
user interfaces, etc., there is a wonderful resource to
help you with your question: The comp.human-factors FAQ
(Frequently Asked/Answers Question) list. You can get
it via anonymous ftp from:
The answers to many questions are in it, but also,
there are pointers to other resources such as a free online
bibliography, related newsgroups and mailing lists, etc.
See the G-* (general) questions and answers for details.
Looking over the FAQ will probably give you all you need,
but if it does not, then you might use the FAQ to help you
come up with a more focused question. Of course, if you
already know about the FAQ and have searched it and the
resources it describes, then please disregard this note.
In any case, good luck with your search.

If someone posts a request for info, please feel free to email them a copy of the above.

"I am lazy - come flame me" messages...

Regular readers of c.h-f may have noticed that "help" messages tend to increase in frequency around the time assignments are due.

Often, the way the message is worded can give the impression that its poster is lazy (i.e., hasn't done any checking on their own to find the info they want). Posters of such messages are less likely to receive help. Instead, some grumpy reader might reply with unflattering remarks. If this happens to you, try not to take it personally. The best approach is preventative...

Do some checking yourself BEFORE you post your question. The obvious place to start is the library. However, there are also resources online (see answer (G-3) below) which you should definitely check-out.

If/when you do post your "help" message, BRIEFLY mention where you've already looked. This will reduce the likelihood of your getting flamed by grumpy readers.

Happy hunting!

From: jakob@Eng.Sun.COM (Jakob Nielsen)
Date: 20 Jun 1994 05:01:37 GMT

With respect to the topic of this thread, I must admit that I used to be bothered by questions that were clearly answered in any of a number of well-established textbooks in the field. Upon further thought, however, I have decided that the user interface field will always have a large number of newbies who don't know about any of the (in our minds) "famous" resources like Perlman's bibliography. So it may be better for us to guide people to those respources and post the FAQ every two weeks or so.

comp.human-factors faq WWW page: