Stack & Tile

Results: S&T Evaluation and Web Survey

Blog post by czeidler on Tue, 2013-09-24 00:27

Most work on my PhD thesis is done and I like to provide you with the results from our research at Uni Auckland on Stack & Tile. At BeGeistert 023 (October 2010) I conducted a user evaluation of Stack & Tile to answer the question whether stacking and tiling within an overlapping window manager bring any benefits to the user. At the end of last year I used a web survey to investigate if and how Stack & Tile is used by actual users. The results of both studies have been presented recently at the INTERACT'13 conference in Cape Town. INTERACT is an A ranked conference for Human Computer Interaction (HCI) and hopefully I was able to interest some other researchers in Haiku. Thanks again for all participants of the evaluation and the survey!

The encouraging results are summarized in the following. The complete paper can be found here.

Stack & Tile Evaluation (BeGeistert 023)

We investigated the benefits of Stack & Tile's stacking and tiling features in a traditional overlapping window manager. Therefore we looked at use-cases where the user is working with documents of the same or of different applications, and a use-case where data is exchanged between documents of the same application, and designed experimental tasks accordingly. Another task measured the time needed to switch between different groups of windows.

In a controlled experiment, we found that stacking and tiling features can significantly improve completion times for tasks involving several windows (of the same application as well as of different applications). Furthermore, switching between different tasks was found to be much faster when windows were grouped by task using Stack & Tile. Setting up a Stack & Tile group is an initial overhead that ma