Metaphor and the Cognitive Representation of Computing Systems

John M. Carroll, John C. Thomas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

158 Scopus citations


In learning, people develop new cognitive structures by metaphorically extending old ones. The metaphors spontaneously generated by new users will predict the ease with which they can master a computer system. Systems which through their interface suggest inefficacious metaphors will accordingly be more difficult to learn and to that extent unacceptable.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)107-116
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE Transactions on Systems, Man and Cybernetics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 1982

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Engineering


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