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Whos adapting Humans or Computers Intelligent Agents Kelly B Yearout April 27 2001 In the past few years 1997 to present there have been tremendous breakthroughs in technology associated with computers and software The achievements all claim to be able to help people and businesses increase their productivity and thus become more efficient There is somewhat of an oxymoron in that ultimately it is the user who must adapt and learn to use these new technologies instead of the technologies being able to conform to the way the user needs it to perform This article is a brief summary of the views thoughts and opinions of experts and innovators as to the direction the field of computer interfaces is moving Michael Dertouzos Director of MIT Laboratory for Computer Science clarifies the state of existing technology We design systems and subsystems individually and then throw them at the public expecting people to make the different components work together Summary In his speech at MITs Laboratory for Computer Science 35 year anniversary 1999 Dertouzos spells out his vision for computing and technology The technologies that we create must enable people to do more by doing less People should be able to address their ancient needs and aspirations with new tools that are natural and require less effort to use Summary As anyone who uses a computer on a regular basis can attest the work has not gotten easier just high-tech In essence the human user must adapt to the requirements of the machine through direct manipulation that requires the user to initiate all tasks explicitly and to monitor all events Maes We still have to manipulate direct and organize actions on the computer instead of on paper or in file cabinets What we need is for the technology to adapt to the individual user so that the technology assists in performing the work Thus the analogy of the computer
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