Eyman’s last chapter “Human-Computer Interaction” delves into the difference between HCI and digital rhetoric. However, it also talks about the connection of these two fields. Eyman states “One of the key connections between HCI and digital rhetoric is the importance of interface. It wasn’t until this class that I learned the term “Interface.” An interface is a platform/program allowing users to interact through networks with other users. An interface can also be an in-person interaction. For instance, Facebook, Instagram, Java, ATM, and airport kiosks are interfaces that involve digital communication and HCI. We use interfaces daily which makes us more digital rhetoric. At the same time, a user (society) has the ability to program interfaces.
HCI vs Digital Rhetoric
In this chapter, we see an aspect of how HCI differentiates from digital rhetoric. Throughout this semester we have learned how technology induces a rhetorical discipline. We have dived into the depth of digital rhetorical studies. We’ve learned that digital rhetoric persuades individuals to interact in digital spaces. Basically, computers taught society how to become fluent in technology. According to Thomas Skeen, HCI concerns itself with user-centric empowerment as an ideal. We have shifted gears in the fact that HCI focuses on the user’s wants and needs. Digital rhetoric focuses on the shared communication of technology. HCI concentrates on development and programming software rather than communication. The difference is that users have control over the technology. HCI empowers the ability and engineering techniques of users. It’s interesting how we have shifted gears from focusing on shared communication to studying people interacting with computers.
Digital rhetoric makes us understand that communication, meaning-making, knowledge construction, and persuasion (Eyman) are its central purpose. The main focus is the discipline it provokes in society. HCI makes us understand the psychology, cognitive science, and sociology of humans. Even though its purposes are different, these two fields will always be connected because they both require the use of interfaces. Therefore, digital rhetoric and HCI will always be mutually beneficial.