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One of the Four Dimensions of Multimedia

Functionality measures the range of capabilities of a media product – its feature set. It is concerned with what a user can see, hear, and do, without regard to specific content. 

  1. Media – what is the mix?
      • Text
      • Photos and graphics
      • Animation and video
      • Sound and music
  2. Interactivity – ways in which the computer responds to the mouse or keyboard. The computer accepts input and something changes as a result. Rudimentary examples are when the user clicks and the computer:
        • Shows a different screen
        • Opens a browser to display a web site
        • Plays a sound.

    More advanced interactive elements include:

        • Search box
        • Email feedback
        • Page tracking
        • Guest book
        • Poll
        • Shopping cart
        • Game
  1. Control – the user’s ability to customize the environment by making choices about
        • Sound – change the level or choose background music
        • Visual – pick a color scheme or set the font size
        • Other areas –skip an introduction or select Spanish instead of English 
  1. Reliability – no errors, bugs or glitches. No dead links.


  1. "Interactivity: A Forgotten Art?" – Roderick Sims,
    Jan. 27, 1997
  2. "What Is Web 2.0?" – Tim O'Reilly,
    Sep. 30, 2005
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