[QGIS-Developer] [Processing][Article] Evaluation of Effective Cognition for the QGIS Processing Modeler

Nyall Dawson nyall.dawson at gmail.com
Sun Mar 15 16:10:56 PDT 2020

On Mon, 16 Mar 2020 at 08:29, João Gaspar <joao.f.r.gaspar at gmail.com> wrote:
> Dear devs,
> While I was doing article research and I found this article about Processing Modeler that was published in February 2020.
> I don't know if one of you were aware of this or if this can help to improve the Processing Modeler. I thought this can be useful that was the reason to share with you.
> This is the abstract:
> This article presents an evaluation of the QGIS Processing Modeler from the point of view of effective cognition. The QGIS Processing Modeler uses visual programming language for workflow design. The functionalities of the visual component and the visual vocabulary (set of symbols and line connectors) are both important. The form of symbols affects how workflow diagrams may be understood. The article discusses the results of assessing the Processing Modeler’s visual vocabulary in QGIS according to the Physics of Notations theory. The article evaluates visual vocabularies from the older QGIS 2.x and newer 3.x versions. The paper identifies serious design flaws in the Processing Modeler. Applying the Physics of Notations theory resulted in certain practical recommendations, such as changing the fill colour of symbols, increasing the size and variety of inner icons, removing functional icons, and using a straight connector line instead of a curved line. Another recommendation was to provide a supplemental preview window for the entire model in order to improve user navigation in huge models. Objective eye-tracking measurements validated some results of the evaluation using the Physics of Notations. The respondents read workflows to solve different tasks and their gazes were tracked. Evaluation of the eye-tracking metrics revealed the respondents’ reading patterns of the diagram. Evaluation using both Physics of Notation theory and eye-tracking measurements inspired recommendations for improving visual notation. A set of recommendations for users is also given, which can be applied easily in practice using a contemporary visual notation.

Really cool! (Wonder if we could convince the authors to extend the
study to other parts of QGIS...!)

Will respond properly when I've had a chance to read and digest fully.


> Is open access:
> https://www.mdpi.com/2076-3417/10/4/1446/htm
> Best regards,
> João Gaspar aka James
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