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Establishment of Product Safety and Usability Laboratory

Funded by State Planning Organization | 2002-2004

Research on the laboratory equipment, usability testing associations and their activities, usability standards. Project size: Approx. 500.000$

Product Safety and Usability Testing

EU 6th Framework “Bridges of Knowledge” Program | 2002 – 2004

Project Partners: METU (Turkey) -TUDelft (The Netherlands) – Loughborough (United Kingdom)

Researcher responsible from database development, content design and user research, in the various ctivities within the project. Project size: Approx. 2 billion €

Consumer Rights and Protection in Turkey: METU/BILTIR UTEST Product Usability Unit – Consumer Associations Workshop

EU 6th Framework “Bridges of Knowledge” Program | 2002 – 2004

Research on the workshop content and and workshop organization

Consumer Product Accidents for Home Appliances Database and “Electrical Home Appliances Accident Database CD”

EU 6th Framework “Bridges of Knowledge” Program | 2002 – 2004

Content development for an interactive CD based on the accident records. The electrical home appliance accident records on the international databases (from UK, US and The Netherlands) and academic publications on product safety were examined to develop an accident database. The incidents were grouped according to the appliance type, incident type and user group; and specific accident scenarios were developed. The content was presented in the form of an interactive CD to increase the awareness in consumers and home appliance industry.


2007 Developing an approach for interaction design of digital consumer products. Pelin Gültekin (Atasoy).Paper presented at the Doctoral consortium. Design Inquiries The Nordic Design Research Conference `07. 27-30 May 2007, Stockholm, Sweden.

Abstract . Digital technology continues to prevail in every part of daily life with an accelerating speed. Accordingly, digital consumer products increasingly integrate multiple and various features, which pose both a problem of complexity and a challenge for developing intuitive interaction alternatives. This paper presents a general framework of a proposed PhD study that mainly attempts to develop an alternative approach to designing digital consumer product interfaces that integrate multiple functions and complex interfaces with digital displays. First stimulants of the problem domain are presented with main arguments. Then possible courses of research are discussed.

2006 Comparisons between user expectations for products in physical and virtual domains. Bahar Şener (Pedgley), Pelin Gültekin (Atasoy) and Çiğdem Erbuğ. In Bust, P.D. (ed.), Contemporary Ergonomics 2006, Taylor & Francis, p.149-156.

Abstract . This paper focuses on the expectations that users form when they are confronted with audio products. It presents the results of a comparative study conducted with twenty users to reveal similarities and differences in their expectations for products in physical (i.e. hardware) and virtual (i.e. software) domains. The results are suggested to be valuable on two accounts. First, for the design of products that can mediate between increased technological possibilities and increased user demands. And second, in relation to methodological issues, for the systematic assessment of user expectations for new products.

2006 User Preferences for Products in Physical and Virtual Domains: A Comparative Study of Audio Players. Pelin Gültekin (Atasoy) Bahar Şener (Pedgley) and Çiğdem Erbug. In de Waard, D., Brookhuis, K.A. and Tofetti, A. (eds.) Development in Human Factors in Transportation, Design and Evaluation, Shaker Publishing, p.213-223.

Abstract . This paper focuses on the product expectations that users form when they are confronted with audio products. It presents the results of a comparative study conducted with twenty users to reveal the similarities and differences of their expectations from portable audio devices versus audio player applications. Analyses using the Repertory Grid Technique are described, followed by a discussion on how the user expectations change depending on a physical or a virtual product is of concern.

Keywords: user expectations, repertory grid technique, consumer products, computer mediated products

2005 Usability Problems in Digital Home Products: An Interactive TV Case Study. Pelin Gültekin (Atasoy) and Çiğdem Erbuğ. HCI International 2005, 11th International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction. July 22 – 27, 2005, Caesar’s Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada USA. MIRA Digital Publishing.

One of the most prevailing outcomes of the development of digital technology is its extensive use in consumer products. It is observed that, in contemporary market conditions, rapid development rate of digital technologies are utilized by producers to differentiate products more easily and rapidly. New features that utilize latest technologies are implemented in consumer products as an absolute way of achieving market success and marketed as a mark of high quality and superiority. However, the novel features integrated into the products for an improved user-product interaction, are questionable when looking from the usability perspective. Increased number of product features can create problems during use and can even remain unused as they do not fit to user requirements.

A field study on interactive TV broadcasting was conducted to question if some of the novel features that are integrated into the products in everyday use are excessive, as they are not required or utilized by users. Users’expectations from this kind of service are collected. An overall evaluation of the system usability was made to inquire if the additional/unused features increased system complexity and caused problems in use.

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