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Release: Oct. 10, 2002

Design, Function Expert To Speak Oct. 16-18 As Beam Visiting Professor

Newsweek magazine has called Donald A. Norman "The guru of workable technology" for his efforts to examine everything from computers to toilet paper holders in determining what works well and what is ill-suited to human needs and capabilities. Norman will visit the University of Iowa campus Oct. 16-18 as part of the Ida Beam Distinguished Visiting Professorship Program.

As part of this visit, he will present two talks based on his forthcoming book, "Emotion and Design," which is concerned with the implications of the mechanisms of human affect and emotion for the design of products. The first talk, at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 16 in Room W10, the Buchanan Auditorium of the John Pappajohn Business Building (PBB), is intended for a general audience. The other, at 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 17 in Room S401 PBB, the Tenneco Colloquium, will focus on aspects of a somewhat more technical nature.

Norman, currently a professor of computer science at Northwestern University and a principal of the Nielsen Norman Group, is a well-known cognitive psychologist and founding figure in the multidisciplinary field of cognitive science. He has authored many books including "The Design of Everyday Things" and "The Invisible Computer."

Norman was formerly on the faculty of the University of California, San Diego, and an Apple Fellow and vice president of the Advanced Technology Group at Apple Computer. Among his other honors, he was the 2002 recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Special Interest Group on Computer Human Interaction of the Association for Computing Machinery.

His visit is co-sponsored by: the department of management sciences in the Henry B. Tippie College of Business; the departments of psychology and computer science in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; psychological and quantitative foundations in the College of Education; and the department of mechanical and industrial engineering in the College of Engineering Norman's activities at the UI are supported by the Ida Cordelia Beam Distinguished Visiting Professorships Program, which brings outstanding scholars to the UI campus for residencies ranging from a few days to an entire academic year. A native of Vinton, Iowa, Beam willed her farm to the UI in 1977.

Her only university connection was a relative who graduated from the College of Medicine. Proceeds from the sale of the farm were used to establish the visiting professorships program in her name. Since 1977, hundreds of eminent scholars and scientists have visited the UI campus to give public lectures and to meet with students and faculty.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact the department of management sciences in advance at (319) 335-0858.