Yale C/AIM Web Style Guide



Literature cited

Multimedia bibliography

Interface bibliography

Interface glossary

Apple Computer, Inc. 1989. HyperCard stack design guidelines. Reading, Mass.: Addison-Wesley.

The "file card" metaphor introduced by HyperCard in 1987 has become the dominant theme in multimedia authoring systems. This book is an excellent guide to the user interface design considerations necessary when designing any graphic interface for the computer screen. It also contains discussions of how multimedia affects user interface design, and the design problems presented by interactive sound and music in computer presentations.

Apple Computer, Inc. 1992. Macintosh human interface guidelines. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.

This volume is Apple's standard guide to the graphic user interface of the Macintosh computer. This book is an excellent introduction to the design principles that underlie all graphic user interfaces, as the Macintosh "desktop" interface is by far the oldest and most highly evolved of the graphic user interfaces now on the market.

Apple Computer, Inc. 1993. Making it Macintosh. The Macintosh interface guidelines companion. CD-ROM. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.

Designed as an interactive companion to the Macintosh Interface Design Guidelines. Has well-organized screens and excellent graphic design, but strangely, the program makes minimal use of the Mac interface.

Blattner, M. M., and R. B. Dannenberg, eds. 1992. Multimedia interface design. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.

A compilation of research papers in interface design and human-computer interaction in multimedia system. Most of the papers are dry and quite technical, but the book is good as a concise reference to a spectrum of research interests in the professions of interface design and multimedia interfaces.

Grudin, J. 1990. The computer reaches out: The historical continuity of interface design. In Empowering people: CHI '90 conference proceedings., ed. J. C. Chew and J. Whiteside. 261-268. Reading, MA.: Addison-Wesley.

A concise overview of the development of graphic user interface concepts and technologies, starting in the mid-1960's with pioneering work by Doug Engelbart (inventor of the mouse) and Ivan Sutherland (inventor of interactive computer graphics).

Hayes, F. and N. Baran. 1989. A guide to GUI's. Byte 14 (7): 250-257.

This is a brief survey of the major graphic user interfaces currently in use, including screen shots of each interface.

Hoffer, E. P., and G. O. Barnett. 1990. Computers in medical education. In Medical informatics: Computer applications in medical care, ed. E. H. Shortliffe and L. E. Perreault. 535-561. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.

This chapter covers some of the history of computer-aided instruction in medicine. Very good summations of the advantages and problems inherent in teaching medicine with computers.


Horton, W. K. 1994. Designing and writing online documentation, 2nd Edition. New York: Wiley.

A superbly researched book covering virtually every facet of computer document design. Horton uses academic-style literature citations liberally throughout the book, so if you are interested in pursuing some specific topic you can easily find out who Horton is citing as a source. The book's bibliography alone is worth the $29.95 cover price.


Horton, W. K. 1991. Illustrating computer documentation. New York: Wiley.

A very practical volume, full of immediately useful and practical advice on computer document design. This book covers a wide variety of topics in visual literacy. Illustrators and graphic designers may find some of the points self-evident or tedious, but the book covers so much useful material that this doesn't really detract from the overall value. Again, Horton's bibliography is extremely thorough, and well worth the price of the book.

Laurel, B., ed. 1990. The art of human-computer interface design. Reading, Mass.: Addison-Wesley.

An interesting compilation of 55 short articles and essays on various aspects of human-computer interaction. The book gives an excellent plain-English (minimal level of tech jargon) overview of human interface design problems, and the design of computer documents.

Laurel, B. 1991. Computers as theater. Reading, Mass.: Addison-Wesley.

Laurel has many interesting things to say about the nature of human-computer interaction, and how dramatic metaphors can help clarify how people react to and work with their computers. This is NOT a how-to book of practical advice, but if you are interested in the possible futures of human interface design this short book is an interesting read.

Lynch, P. J. and C. C. Jaffe. 1990. An Introduction to Interactive Hypermedia. Journal of Biocommunication 17 (1): 2-8.

A review article describing how hypertext and hypermedia metaphors can be applied to medical teaching problems. Describes the basic structure of hypertext systems, and how audiovisual computing techniques can extend the hypertext metaphor into multimedia documents.


Marcus, A. 1992. Graphic design for electronic documents and user interfaces. New York: ACM Press, Addison-Wesley.

A very well-written book on the theoretical basis and practical problems associated with computer document design. Marcus' outline for a computer document design program is especially useful, outlining many of the design features that should be specified in a thorough interface design program.


McCloud, S. 1993. Understanding comics: The invisible art. Northhampton, MA: Kitchen Sink Press.

A superb book-length graphic essay (McCloud uses comics to explain graphic communication). Fast becoming a classic in graphic communications, both for McCloud's insights into graphic form and communication, and because the book is self-exemplifying as a graphic narrative.

Microsoft Corporation. 1992. The windows interface: An application design guide. Redmond, WA: Microsoft Press.

On of the few existing books dedicated specifically to Windows interface design. Well written and organized.


Norman, D. A. 1988. The psychology of everyday things. New York: Basic Books. (Now sold in paperback as The Design of Everyday Things.)

This little book is already considered a modern classic in the industrial design and human interface design professions. Norman is a cognitive psychologist, and his book is a highly readable examination of why certain kinds of manufactured things work well and are easy to understand, and why other things (like computers and VCR's) are often so poorly designed and difficult to use. If you pick one book off this list to read, PICK THIS ONE.

Norman, D. A. 1992. Turn signals are the facial expressions of automobiles. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.

A compilation of short essays on industrial design and human-technology interactions. Highly readable, plain-English wisdom on the design of computers, consumer products, and high technology.


Norman, D. A. 1993. Things that make us smart: Defending human attributes in the age of the machine. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.

An extension of Norman's earlier books, this time focusing specifically on the uses, human interface issues, and societal problems of computers and high technology.

Shneiderman, B. 1992. Designing the user interface. 2nd Ed. Reading, Mass.: Addison-Wesley.

Shneiderman is one of the leading academics in human-computer interface design. This somewhat technical book gives a good overview of interface design developments during the 1970's through the early-1990's, and contains many useful explanations of the philosophical and research underpinnings of graphic interface design.

Shortliffe, E. H., and L. E. Perreault, ed. 1990. Medical informatics: Computer applications in health care. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.

This volume is an excellent introduction to the wide range of topics now lumped under the umbrella term medical informatics, including hospital information systems, bibliographic research systems like MEDLINE, digital radiology systems, picture archiving and communication systems (PACS), and other many topics involving the use of computers in medical environments. The best single-volume introduction to medical informatics available.


Smith, D. C., C. Irby, R. Kimball, and B. Verplank. 1982. Designing the Star user interface. Byte 7 (4): 242-282.

This article is a GUI classic. It was written by the principle designers of the Xerox Star graphic user interface developed at Xerox's Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) in the mid 1970's. This is the interface work everyone else (Apple, Microsoft, etc.) has copied and adapted into today's current Mac and Windows GUI's. The article covers all of the basic ideas that underlie the graphic metaphors for human-computer interaction, and how those ideas were implemented on the Xerox Star computer. Highly readable, with minimal technical jargon.

Tognazzini, B. 1992. Tog on interface. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.

For fifteen years "Tog" Tognazinni was Apple's chief interface advocate (he has since left Apple and now works at Sun). This book is a lively, informal series of essays on a wide variety of interface design issues. Not a book to refer to for carefully organized prescriptions on interface problems, but good fun to read anyway.


Tufte, E. R. 1983. The visual display of quantitative information. Cheshire, CT: Graphics Press.

Tufte's book is now widely regarded as the best work that has ever been done on the design of data graphics. Full of well designed and superbly printed illustrations of Tufte's likes and dislikes in data graphics. Don't be put off by the title; the text is very well written and not particularly technical.


Tufte, E. R. 1990. Envisioning information. Cheshire, CT: Graphics Press.

This book is the best single-volume textbook on visual literacy that I know of, covering conventional graphic design issues, quantitative data graphics, and also includes Tufte's thoughts on human interface design for the computer screen. Superbly illustrated with many graphic examples.

Weiser, M. 1991. The computer for the 21st Century. Scientific American 265 (3): 94-104.

The author is one of the current researchers at Xerox's Palo Alto Research Center (PARC), and he describes PARC's current work on new computing software and hardware paradigms. Weiser advocates what PARC calls a "ubiquitous computing" model, where offices and other work environments might be full of many small computers that will all interact and communicate to aid people in creating and using information. Weiser's model is especially relevant to medical environments, and may be the most realistic scenario for the future of medical computing.
Copyright 1997 P. Lynch and S. Horton,
   all rights reserved. Yale University   Revised January 1997.