Journal cover Journal topic
Proceedings of the ICA
Journal topic
Articles | Volume 4
03 Dec 2021
 | 03 Dec 2021

Map Evaluation under COVID-19 restrictions: A new visual approach based on think aloud interviews

Martin Knura and Jochen Schiewe

Keywords: Map Evaluation, Cognition in Geovisualization, Visual Analytics, Usability Testing

Abstract. With the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the execution of eye-tracking user studies in indoor environments was no longer possible, and remote and contactless substitutes are needed. With this paper, we want to introduce an alternative method to eye tracking, completely feasible under COVID-19 restrictions. Our main technique are think aloud interviews, where participants constantly verbalize their thoughts as they move through a test. We record the screen and the mouse movements during the interviews, and analyse both the statements and the mouse positions afterwards. With this information, we can encode the approximate map position of the user’s attention for each second of the interview. This allows us to use the same visual methods as for eye-tracking studies, like attention maps or trajectory maps. We implement our method conducting a user study with 21 participants to identify user behaviour while solving high-level interpretation tasks, and with the results of this study, we can show that or new method provides a useful substitute for eye-tracking user studies.

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