|InfoVis.net>Magazine>message nº 59||Published 2001-09-24|
|También disponible en Español|
The digital magazine of InfoVis.net
Dr. Carla Spinillo, is lecturer and researcher at The Federal University of Pernambuco, Brazil. Her PhD Thesis "An analytical approach to procedural pictorial sequences" has been devoted to the study of this field that only recently has begun receiving the attention it deserves. Carla has been kind enough to contribute with the following introductory article to Inf@Vis!.
The use of pictures to convey instructions has been widely employed in a variety of user’s documents, such as leaflets and manuals. It is intended to facilitate communication, as pictures represent better than words certain information, such as relative size and connection of pieces (e.g. Bieger & Glock, 1986; Weidenman, 1994; Wildbur & Burke, 1998; Mijksenaar & Westendorp, 1999. See the references).
Pictures are also an important means of communication when the instructions or procedures are addressed to an international audience or to an audience with a low level of literacy.
This paper briefly discusses some features and relationships that characterise this kind of visual instruction.
The representation of procedures through pictures (alone or together with texts) is referred to as a procedural pictorial sequence – PPS – (Spinillo & Dyson, 2000; Spinillo, 2000). The analysis of such sequences is a complex issue, due to the versatility of their graphic presentation, which involves a wide range of aspects and relationships.
Once given the basic definitions, in the next issue we’ll speak about the visual organisation and the design guidelines applicable to pictorial instructions.
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