Does Progress Bars’ Behavior Influence the User Experience in Human-Computer Interaction?
The concept of time passing by has always been the subject of many debates through the centuries of humanity. Aristotle pointed out that the temporal consciousness does not capture only the present but also past and immediate future.
Daily, during human-computer interactions (HCI), it is not uncommon that the user has to wait in front of one’s computer: during the loading of a web page, the setup of a program or its start. In the field of ergonomics, the main part of the recommendations for the design of user experience and the usability of systems emphasizes on the importance of the feedback provided to the users on the system state, especially during these waiting periods.
The last component of this model, working memory will in turn create a representation of elapsed time, based primarily on the number of pulses relayed. Following this model, if one has the will to shorten the perceived time duration; one must either reduce the person’s level of arousal or divert one’s attention from time signals. Conversely, if they are not aware before the experiment that they will have to estimate perceived time duration, they will be performing a retrospective judgment.
The issue of progress bars’ behavior has been studied experimentally in the form of dichotomous comparison between progress bars with constant fill-rate or bars with variable fill-rate. In their
experimental study, harrison, amento, kuznetsov and bell compare the perceived time between 9 bars of equal duration but with variation in the speed and style of filling.
Psychol Cogn Sci Open J. 2019; 5(1): 6-13. doi: 10.17140/PCSOJ-5-144