Usability Architects, Inc.

Jon Meads
Principal Consultant

Photo - Jon Meads Intrigued by the difficulties in understanding new concepts and solving intricate problems, Jon Meads developed a strong interest in logic and cognitive psychology as a means towards understanding how people perceive and think. While an undergraduate at MIT, he was introduced to computers and became convinced these machines could assist people in understanding as well as calculation. This led to Jon becoming an active participant in the development of interactive systems as a researcher, systems developer, and manager.

Jon's previous efforts range from investigation of interactive techniques for analysis of raw scientific data to the design of interaction paradigms for highly distributed computing systems. He has developed systems ranging from editing of radio astronomy data to prototyping command and control displays.

Jon's concern with interaction extends beyond the user interface into the heart of software engineering. Jon conceived of and was the original designer for Tektronix's PLOT–10/Terminal Control System, a pioneering package which facilitated the development of early interactive systems. Following this, Jon managed the development and was one of the principle designers of the Tektronix 4081 Graphics Operating System, one of the first commercial systems to offer multiple windows, logical input devices, and device–independent coordinates. Jon has also served as an engineering manager and as an information services manager.

During his term as chair of the Association for Computing Machinery's Special Interest Group on Computer Graphics (ACM/SIGGRAPH), Jon provided the organizational base and direction for transforming SIGGRAPH from a small group with irregular and informal activities into the current organization of several thousand members. He was a co–founder of the Annual SIGGRAPH conferences, helped initiate SIGGRAPH's standards involvement, and championed the need for attention to interactive issues.

This led to Jon's early participation in the Special Interest Group on Computer-Human Interaction (ACM/SIGCHI). He has served as a member of the Advisory Board of the national organization, co–organized three SIGCHI workshops, served as Special Interest Chair for the CHI+GI '87 Conference, and was a Co-Chair for CHI '90, the 1990 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems. In addition, Jon has been a speaker and panelist at a number of conferences. He has taught computer graphics at Portland State University and has lectured on user interface concepts and techniques as an ACM National Lecturer.

Jon Meads has held software engineering and computer systems management positions with Tektronix, Intel, Four-Phase Systems, and Bell Northern Research. At BNR, Jon served as a Member of Scientific Staff in the Corporate Design Group providing human factors/software engineering expertise for the design of user interfaces for network management systems and in the investigation of groupware technology. Currently he is president and principal consultant for Usability Architects, Inc., a firm specializing in user-centered design, the engineering of usability into products, and in providing strategic consulting and advice on initiating usability engineering into the development process.

Jon is a member of the Association for Computing Machinery, SIGCHI, SIGSOFT, IEEE Computer Society, Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES), and the Usability Professionals' Association (UPA).