Usability Engineering

I just came across an “old” SIGCHI bulletin board which is concerned about the integration of HCI principles and Software Engineering methods. This lets me think about software engineering processes. The integration seems to be an old topic but it sounds very promising. The descriptions are reasonable. However, they seem still not to be applied in practice. As far as I know just a few companies are really aware about their processes and process models are still not the state of the art. Consequently, I am not really surprised that Usability Engineering and its principles was not even mentioned in my lectures and does not seem to be really popular in practice. Nevertheless, the theoretical point of view is interesting and should definitely be considered while engineering software. I think, such knowledge is essential today, especially as user interfaces become more and more important as they communicate quality and attract potential customers.