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The term interactivity refers to the mutual relationship between humans and technology, or among humans themselves, facilitated by information exchange. This principle is crucial in numerous areas such as human communication, computer science, web design, and artifact communication. It encompasses human interactions such as message exchange and interpretation of body language. In the technological sphere, interactivity denotes the way systems like computers react to human activities and tasks. For instance, a website may incorporate elements like hyperlinks and multimedia presentations to encourage user engagement. In the context of artifact communication, interactivity represents the connection between the user and the artifact’s functionality. Thus, interactivity is a key element in fostering a dynamic information exchange in both human and technological interactions.

Interactivity (Wikipedia)

Across the many fields concerned with interactivity, including information science, computer science, human-computer interaction, communication, and industrial design, there is little agreement over the meaning of the term "interactivity", but most definitions are related to interaction between users and computers and other machines through a user interface. Interactivity can however also refer to interaction between people. It nevertheless usually refers to interaction between people and computers – and sometimes to interaction between computers – through software, hardware, and networks.

Multiple views on interactivity exist. In the "contingency view" of interactivity, there are three levels:

  1. Not interactive, when a message is not related to previous messages.
  2. Reactive, when a message is related only to one immediately previous message.
  3. Interactive, when a message is related to a number of previous messages and to the relationship between them.

One body of research has made a strong distinction between interaction and interactivity. As the suffix 'ity' is used to form nouns that denote a quality or condition, this body of research has defined interactivity as the 'quality or condition of interaction'. These researchers suggest that the distinction between interaction and interactivity is important since interaction may be present in any given setting, but the quality of the interaction varies from low and high.

Human interactivity
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