Graduation Year


Date of Submission


Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Mathematical Sciences

Reader 1

Arthur H. Lee

Reader 2

James C. Boerkoel Jr.

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Terms of Use for work posted in Scholarship@Claremont.

Rights Information

© 2015 Grant Yang


The field of computer user interface design is rapidly changing and diversifying as new devices are developed every day. Technology has risen to become an integral part of life for people of all ages around the world. Modern life as we know it depends on computers, and understanding the interfaces through which we communicate with them is critically important in an increasingly digital age. The first part of this paper examines the technological origins and historical background driving the development of graphical user interfaces from its earliest incarnations to today. Hardware advancements and key turning points are presented and discussed. In the second part of this paper, skeuomorphism and flat design, two of the most common design trends today, are analyzed and explained. Finally, the future course of user interface is predicted based off of emergent technologies such as the Apple Watch, Google Glass, Microsoft HoloLens, and Microsoft PixelSense. Through understanding the roots and current state of computer user interface design, engineers, designers, and scientists can help us get the most out of our ever-changing world of advanced technology as it becomes further intertwined with our existence.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.