How Interaction Designers Use Tools to Manage Ideas

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This article presents a grounded theory analysis based on a qualitative study of professional interaction designers (n = 20) with a focus on how they use tools to manage design ideas. Idea management can be understood as a subcategory of the field personal information management, which includes the activities around the capture, organization, retrieval, and use of information. Idea management pertains to the management and use of ideas, a particular type of information, as part of creative activities. The article identifies tool-supported idea management strategies and needs of professional interaction designers, and discusses the context and consequences of these strategies. Based on our analysis, we identify a conceptual framework of 10 strategies which are supported by tools: saving, externalizing, advancing, exploring, archiving, clustering, extracting, browsing, verifying, and collaborating. Finally, we discuss how this framework can be used to characterize and analyze existing and novel idea management tools.
Original languageEnglish
Article number7
JournalA C M Transactions on Computer - Human Interaction
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Externally publishedYes


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