RUSSELL et al, 1997. Design Guidelines...an unacceptable constraint on creativity or good design practice? IDATER 1997 Conference, Loughborough: Loughborough University
A programme of research was motivated by an identified training need within the School of Design at Staffordshire University. There was a specific requirement to develop computer based training materials for software tools used in multimedia development. Guidance was required to maintain a standard design approach for producing such materials.
Initial investigations found that present 'how to do it' guides were insufficiently focused. The research centred on compiling a focused set of guidelines and related design techniques and heuristics to construct an appropriate guide. This paper discusses some of the findings and emerging issues of the research project, for example:
generic (ambiguous) and emphatic (context specific) forms of guidelines;
ineffective and effective published guidelines in the context of modern multimedia;
a negative attitude by designers to present forms of guidelines;
the need for a more focused approach to offering guidance for specific domain contexts;
as multimedia has no widely accepted conventions, guidelines could help to establish principles of good design practice.