University of Twente Student Theses


Cognitive load design implications for the Modsy controller

Driel, B. van (2021) Cognitive load design implications for the Modsy controller.

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Abstract:How easy and understandable a product is to use partly determines whether people can benefit from the features of the product. If people are capable of understanding a product, they can benefit from the possibilities of that product. On the contrary, if the product is too difficult for them to understand, the people who use the product might only become irritated when using the product. The cognitive load of a product is one determinant that influences how easy and understandable the product is to use. Cognitive load is also an important factor that influences the process of making music. Having as much cognitive load available for the creation of music might enable musicians to put more expression, creativity and fun into their music production. As a starting point of this thesis, a design for a music controller formed the basis that needed to be improved. This music controller is called Modsy which is a product that was developed by Weirdly Wired. Since the cognitive load is an important determinant for a creative process such as making music, reducing the cognitive load might help musicians with their music production. Thus the goal of this thesis is: “Decrease the cognitive load of the Modsy controller while maintaining its main functionalities”. A literature review helped to reveal six cognitive load reducing categories. These load reducing categories can be used to reduce the cognitive load of a product. By applying these categories to the design of the Modsy, ideas were generated that could be used to reduce the cognitive load of the Modsy. Eventually, an idea was worked out that especially makes use of the load reducing category pacing learning. By using the knowledge musicians already have about their software, the required cognitive load of the music controller might be lowered. To do so an additional controller was built with faders as input type. This way the hardware looks more like the software in comparison to the old system. It was expected that by applying the cognitive load reducing category pacing learning the cognitive load of the new system would be lower than with the old system. Although no significant results could be found to confirm this hypothesis, the results of the evaluation are promising. Future work is needed to improve the prototype on some aspects and more musicians should test the new system to draw any conclusions
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:EEMCS: Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science
Subject:53 electrotechnology
Programme:Creative Technology BSc (50447)
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