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What is Multimedia Applications?

Cover imageMany evaluation methods are to be found in research literature: they can be formal, automatic, empirical or informal. The informal methods include the so-called inspection methods, which provide a good compromise between the cost and implementation time on the one hand, and the results they make it possible to obtain on the other. Amongst these methods, Cognitive Walkthrough enables the detection of a certain number of usability defects and the estimation of the degree of seriousness of the defect. In this article, we concentrate on Cognitive Walkthrough. We are particularly interested in it because, as far as we know, it is the only method based on theory (the theory of learning through exploration, itself inspired by Norman's Action Theory). However, although its usefulness as regards software ergonomics has been recognised, its efficiency in the case of multimedia applications is still far from being proved and very few research projects have been published on the matter. In fact, multimedia documents have characteristics which differ from those of traditional human–machine systems. This article presents a study on the use of Cognitive Walkthrough for the evaluation of several multimedia applications intended for the general public; it reveals the difficulties met by users and the areas in which the method needs to be adapted.


  • Evaluation;
  • Cognitive Walkthrough;
  • Multimedia application

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