User interfaces for all
Proceedings of the 5th ERCIM Workshop, Dagstuhl, Germany, November 28th - December 1st, 1999. Special Theme: User-Tailored Information Environments
Special theme: user tailored infomation environments
The authors of this paper wholeheartedly support the International Scientific Forum 'Toward an Information Society for All' initiative. We aim to contribute to discussion of the 'users' trajectory towards an Information Society for all as defined in 'Toward an Information Society for All: HCI Challenges and R&D Recommendations' (Stephanidis et al, 1999). A broadening of the definition of user requirements for the user tailored information environment, is suggested, to include off-line support for those members of the community who do not have the personal capital to support participation in the Information Society. These individuals are often reluctant to become involved in Information Technology and lack confidence. They find it threatening and difficult and frequently lack the resources to see ahead to the benefits that will accrue. These issues should be addressed if we are to 'push' the use of Information Technology into these previously excluded populations. This paper discusses theoretical approaches to the problem and drawing on experience gained while working with two such user groups, proposes an initial framework of measures to support their take-up of Information Technology.