Workload and other constraints prevent General Practitioners from accessing medical evidence for clinical decisions. This problem was studied in New Zealand GPs using Optimal Foraging Theory developed in ecology. GPs information search strategies were modelled as sequential steps associated with costs and benefits measured from logbooks of actual searches. By consulting the most profitable sources, switching sources when unsuccessful, and double checking, GPs seem close to an optimal trade-off between maximizing search success and information reliability, and minimizing searching time. Subsidised training in information searching and provision of a literature search service are two inferred avenues to access medical evidence.
Although much of the hubris and hyperbole surrounding the 1990's Internet has softened to a reasonable level, the inexorable momentum of information growth continues unabated. This wealth of information provides resources for adapting to the problems posed by our increasingly complex world, but the simple availability of more information does not guarantee its successful transformation into valuable knowledge that shapes, guides, and improves our activity. When faced with something like the analysis of sense-making behavior on the web, traditional research models tell us a lot about learning and performance with browser operations, but very little about how people will actively navigate and search through information structures, what information they will choose to consume, and what conceptual models they will induce about the landscape of cyberspace.Thus, it is fortunate that a new field of research, Adaptive Information Interaction (AII), is becoming possible. AII centers on the problems of understanding and improving human-information interaction. It is about how people will best shape themselves to their information environments, and how information environments can best be shaped to people. Its roots lie in human-computer interaction (HCI), information retrieval, and the behavioral and social sciences.This book is about Information Foraging Theory (IFT), a new theory in Adaptive Information Interaction that is one example of a recent flourish of theories in adaptationist psychology that draw upon evolutionary-ecological theory in biology. IFT assumes that people (indeed, all organisms) are ecologically rational, and that human information-seeking mechanisms and strategies adapt the structure of the information environments in which they operate. Its main aim is to create technology that is better shaped to users. Information Foraging Theory will be of interest to student and professional researchers in HCI and cognitive psychology.
Although there is extensive literature in the field of behavioral ecology that attempts to explain foraging of individuals, social foraging--the ways in which animals search and compete for food in groups--has been relatively neglected. This book redresses that situation by providing both a synthesis of the existing literature and a new theory of social foraging. Giraldeau and Caraco develop models informed by game theory that offer a new framework for analysis. Social Foraging Theory contains the most comprehensive theoretical approach to its subject, coupled with quantitative methods that will underpin future work in the field. The new models and approaches that are outlined here will encourage new research directions and applications. To date, the analysis of social foraging has lacked unifying themes, clear recognition of the problems inherent in the study of social foraging, and consistent interaction between theory and experiments. This book identifies social foraging as an economic interaction between the actions of individuals and those of other foragers. This interdependence raises complex questions about the size of foraging groups, the diversity of resources used, and the propensity of group members to exploit each other or forage cooperatively. The models developed in the book will allow researchers to test their own approaches and predictions. Many years in development, Social Foraging Theory will interest researchers and graduate students in such areas as behavioral ecology, population ecology, evolutionary biology, and wildlife management.
Finally a thorough pedagogical survey of the multidisciplinary science of HCI. Human-Computer Interaction spans many disciplines, from the social and behavioral sciences to information and computer technology. But of all the textbooks on HCI technology and applications, none has adequately addressed HCI's multidisciplinary foundations until now. HCI Models, Theories, and Frameworks fills a huge void in the education and training of advanced HCI students. Its authors comprise a veritable house of diamonds internationally known HCI researchers, every one of whom has successfully applied a unique scientific method to solve practical problems. Each chapter focuses on a different scientific analysis or approach, but all in an identical format, especially designed to facilitate comparison of the various models. HCI Models, Theories, and Frameworks answers the question raised by the other HCI textbooks: How can HCI theory can support practice in HCI? * Traces HCI research from its origins * Surveys 14 different successful research approaches in HCI * Presents each approach in a common format to facilitate comparisons * Web-enhanced with teaching tools at http://www.HCImodels.com *Contributors are leading researchers in the field of Human-Comptuter Interaction *Fills a major gap in current literature about the rich scientific foundations of HCI *Provides a thorough pedogological survey of the science of HCI