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CHI
1995
ACM

Oh what a tangled web we weave: metaphor and mapping in graphical interfaces

9 years 27 days ago
Oh what a tangled web we weave: metaphor and mapping in graphical interfaces
The relations among graphical representations, computer functionality, and everyday objects are more complex than terms like “the desktop metaphor” may suggest. While metaphors in the everyday world highlight similarities between preexisting entities, interface metaphors create new ones. But new computer entities can also be created without using metaphor, when existing ones are combined via conceptual structuring and the results expressed via iconic perceptual mappings.. Naming such constructs involves yet another metaphor, however, between the functionality suggested graphically and that implied by the name. In sum, interface representations – which can only be called “metaphors” metaphorically – are complex and confusing, but this leads to a flexibility and power that may be lost if simpler mappings are used.
William W. Gaver
Added 25 Aug 2010
Updated 25 Aug 2010
Type Conference
Year 1995
Where CHI
Authors William W. Gaver
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