Tangible Lighting Controls
'Tangible lighting controls' is used as an umbrella term to describe lighting control systems that are easy to understand and pleasurable to use by end-users. The crucial question posed is, what is the nature of interface designs sought by end-users for maximising interaction with lighting control systems? The manner in which this question is posed implies a fundamental assumption that improved usability and end-user experience are the primary goals. The concept of end-user understanding of lighting control interfaces is proposed as a basis for improving the usability and end-user experience of lighting control interfaces. Usability engineering methods involving survey research, experimental mock-ups and prototyping have been used to enable end-users to design and evaluate lighting control interfaces. The essential difference is to include end-users' point of view about ease of understanding control functions and pleasure of performing control tasks along with a technical point of view about meeting required standards. Manufacturers' claims about the effectiveness of existing lighting control interfaces are challenged, and an entirely different way of thinking about interface design is revealed. Such a change of thinking may be seen as a new framework for improved designs of lighting control interfaces as well as evaluation of their usability and end-user experience.