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Supporting Memory for Spatial Location while Reading from Small Displays

Kenton Ohara, Abi Sellen, Dik Bentley
Research has shown that when people read paper documents, they develop an incidental memory for the location of information within those documents. However, this kind of spatial memory is undermined in conventional on-line scrolling interfaces. We report on an experiment in which we show that careful design of the interface can reinstate memory for spatial location. As we will show, this has particular implications for the design of interfaces for small screen displays.
Extended Abstracts, CHI ’99, Human Factors in Computing Systems, 15-20 May 1999, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S.A., pp 220-221.