For this blog, I observed a roommate of mine interacting with the iGoogle interface. This user was a first time user to the software who previously had a Google account, but was unaware of how this iGoogle software worked. I set up the user’s account with the default implementation of iGoogle, and allowed observed them as they interacted with the environment. I feel that the user’s first response to the software was that of some confusion. The user was unaware of exactly what to do and how to interact with the environment.
Once I gave some basic instruction to the user, they were much more comfortable overall with the interface. I feel that once the user is able to customize portions of this site, they become much more comfortable with the interface and feel more free to roam about the application. I feel that the designers of iGoogle may base this more towards users who are familiar with the Google interface and are planning on providing documentation to those user’s who may not be quite as familiar.
Overall, my roommate felt that it took him about 10 minutes to get familiar with the site and was shortly thereafter adding widgets and customizable content to the site. I feel that this shows that even though there is a learning curve to get the relevant information onto the site, once this has been reached the user’s are very comfortable and are able to interact easily within the interface.