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Mac Users Do It Differently: the Role of Operating System and Individual Differences in File Management

by   Jesse David Dinneen, et al.

Despite much discussion in HCI research about how individual differences likely determine computer users' personal information management (PIM) practices, the extent of the influence of several important factors remains unclear, including users' personalities, spatial abilities, and the different software used to manage their collections. We therefore analyse data from prior CHI work to explore (1) associations of people's file collections with personality and spatial ability, and (2) differences between collections managed with different operating systems and file managers. We find no notable associations between users' attributes and their collections, and minimal predictive power, but do find considerable and surprising differences across operating systems. We discuss these findings and how they can inform future research.


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