Macro Usability

Rami Tabbah - April 17th 2008

Usability principles and criteria apply to more than designing user interfaces and interactiv systems. They apply to how people use buildings and many specialized in designing signs and space. I want to introduce the concept of Macro Usability. Not sure if anyone introduced this term, but I haven't seen it so far in literature, not in ACM Digital Library anyways.

To me, Macro Usability is the usability principles applied to absolutely everything. Like user interfaces and buildings, communities, cities, tax systems, company structures, political systems, and every other system we interact with has to adhere to the usability principles and be evaluated based on usability criteria. The reason is simple: we are humans and we use our the same cognitive senses we user to interact with user interfaces to interact with all other systems we are exposed to.