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Arguably, the key factor in initiating the development of HCI was the advent of personal computing – a marked change from the 50s-70s when computers were almost exclusively mainframes used by scientists and engineers. For personal computing users, “computer” effectively referred more to the interface than to the hardware running the interface, because the interface was, for users, effectively the means by which they got their work done.
The first iteration of the CHI conference, in 1982, would be a reasonable candidate for the founding of HCI. However, Shneiderman’s “Software Psychology”, published in 1980, would be my choice – because it envisioned and made explicit concepts which would become foundational for HCI....
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