As users turn to the World Wide Web to accomplish an increasing variety of daily tasks, many engage in information assimilation (IA), a process defined as the gathering, editing, annotating, organizing, and saving of Web information, and the tracking of ongoing Web work processes. The process of IA, which is similar to traditional note taking but in the Web environment, emerges from a literature review and an ethnographic field study, as presented in this article. Despite strong evidence which suggests that IA is critical to many Web users, however, a scenario-based observational usability study and a heuristic evaluation indicate that it is currently not well supported by existing software applications. This article, which culminates in the presentation of NetNotes - a Web-based e-notebook developed specifically to support the process of IA - illustrates how design requirements can be effectively extracted and synthesized from a variety of complementary background user studies.
|Number of pages
|International Journal of Human-Computer Interaction
|Published - 2004