Auralization of document structure
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An experiment compared the effectiveness of auditory, visual, and combination cues to convey document structure. Subjects demonstrated an equivalent level of understanding of the document structure and its content with either a combination cue or a visual cue. Subjects required more time to answer questions in the combination condition than in the visual condition. This suggests a greater cognitive effort is required. A sound-only condition has the poorest performance both in response time and in the subject's answers to questions about the document's structure and its content. Subjects were grouped based on whether or not they replayed sounds as a retention tactic. Subjects who replayed sounds did better than subjects who did not. These results contribute to our understanding of potential uses of sound in user interfaces. The cues used for this task do not appear promising. Future research to determine how to make use of sound must consider user tactics for processing sound cues.