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One of my team is looking at using Feng GUI http://www.feng-gui.com/. Does anyone have experience of it and/or been able to test it against results of eye-tracking of real users?

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Feng GUI works very well when your designing web pages and want balance between images, content text and navigation elements. Especially if you redesign iteratively you'll get different results on different designs. Kind of a rapid A/B-testing. But one should keep in mind that this is automated and not to be compared with eye-tracking - which is very different. It's a human vs. machine thing, and we (humans) haven't developed machines that far yet - but we get better every day.

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Those are not the exact words used on the website but it's clearly marketed as a predictive model of human visual attention and gaze behavior. Validation against actual eye tracking data therefore seems eminently reasonable. Either there is a strong relationship and the thing is useful or there isn't and no amount of “keeping in mind it's a machine” is going to provide you with any relevant insight. What else could it be compared with? What could “works well” possibly mean beside “provides data similar to eye tracking”? –  Gaël Laurans Nov 16 '12 at 9:24
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I'm skeptical. Perhaps the 'attention analysis' has some value because. As mentioned above, it is predictive model based on salience of page elements based on size, contrast, and location. Yet it is one of many possible predictive models of attention to visual stimuli. I doubt the 'Gaze Plot' has any value. A gaze path is determined as much by the users task as it is by the visual elements on the page. Try this thought experiment. <continued in the next comment because I am running out of room.> –  user1757436 Nov 17 '12 at 12:16
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<continued from previous comment> (1) Go to Amazon with the intent of buying a Kindle. Consider the gaze path for completing this task. (2) Go to Amazon with the intent of buying the book 'The Narrative of Cabeza de Vaca'. Consider the gaze path for completing this task. Most likely, these are different gaze paths. Unless Feng GUI allows you to specify the user's goal then the gaze path analysis is unlikely to tell you anything useful regarding eye tracking as it relates to task completion. –  user1757436 Nov 17 '12 at 12:20
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I was curious how accurate the machine is and tried to find some heatmap samples in the web. I found two and through the wayback archive the original website (with minor modifications). And here are the results:

First Sample

Analysed by Fen-Gui

enter image description here enter image description here

Hetamap found at normalmodes.com

Second Sample

Analysed by Fen-Gui

enter image description here enter image description here

Hetamap found at themarketingguy.wordpress.com

I have no experience with heatmaps nor done an eyetracking yet. For me it does look to reliable. Especially the second page is obviously incorrect. The algorithm seems not to cope text or reading of text. Whereas the portal-like situation at first page seems quite okay.

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I do actually have an eye-tracer myself, but since an ordinary pure eye-tracker session requires lots of participants (50+ to get reliable results), it't not easy to set up a "simple" comparison to the Fen-Gui analysis. An other Norwegian UX consultancy did a comparison 4 years ago. Not sure about setup and reliability here. Their conclusion was "Feel free to use Feng-GUI to get an impression of what will stand out visually on the page. Beyond that nothing can replace traditional eye-tracking - with users..." –  Jørn E. Angeltveit Nov 16 '12 at 9:26
    
Thanks for the link. So, the main problem of computers are still the understanding of content and an intention of visit. Thats for the reading and text part. Very insightful. –  FrankL Nov 16 '12 at 9:37
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