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Über dieses Buch

This book presents cutting-edge research on innovative system interfaces, highlighting both lifecycle development and human–technology interaction, especially in virtual, augmented and mixed reality systems. It describes advanced methodologies and tools for evaluating and improving interface usability, and discusses new models, case studies and good practices. The book addresses the human, hardware, and software factors in the process of developing interfaces for optimizing total system performance, while minimizing costs. It also highlights the forces currently shaping the nature of computing and systems, such as the importance of portability and technologies for reducing power requirements; the need for better assimilation of computation in the environment; and solutions to promote computer and system accessibility for people with special needs. Based on the AHFE 2020 Virtual Conference on Human Factors and Systems Interaction, held on July 16–20, 2020, the book offers a timely survey and a practice-oriented guide for systems interface users and developers alike.



Management of Productivity in Smart Manufacturing and Industry 4.0


Optimizing Inspection Process Severity by Machine Learning Under Label Uncertainty

The increasing competition forces manufacturing companies striving for Zero Defect Manufacturing to constantly improve their products and processes. This vision cannot be realized completely however, so cost-efficient inspection of quality is of high importance: While no defects should remain undetected, this always comes at the expense of pseudo defects. As this effect is common knowledge, the automatically generated inspection results have to be verified by human process experts. As this manual verification leads to tremendous inspection costs, reducing pseudo defects is a major business case nowadays. This paper presents an approach to reduce pseudo defects by applying Machine Learning (ML). A decision support system based on recorded inspection data and ML techniques has been developed to reduce manual verification efforts.

Lukas Schulte, Jacqueline Schmitt, Florian Meierhofer, Jochen Deuse

The Use of AI-Based Assistance Systems in the Service Sector: Opportunities, Challenges and Applications

The growth in digitalization and, above all, the use of artificial intelligence offers major opportunities for companies but also poses substantial challenges. Current technology is beginning to reshape and redistribute the division of labor and the responsibility for decision-making between humans and technological systems. This necessitates new approaches to work design as well as new skills on the part of employees. This paper first considers various scenarios for the future of work and then focuses on the service sector. We examine the challenges that such scenarios represent as well as their potential to increase productivity while also reducing the workload on employees. On the basis of two examples of AI-based assistance in the service sector, we illustrate current and future uses of this technology.

Maike Link, Claudia Dukino, Walter Ganz, Karin Hamann, Kathrin Schnalzer

Achievements and Opportunities of Digitalization in Productivity Management

Digitalization changes the handling of data and information by offering new and extended opportunities for collecting, transferring, evaluating and exploiting information. This allows increases in effectiveness and efficiency and also opens new opportunities for productivity management. To analyze how these opportunities are used in the German industry and which potential for further development is estimated, the Institute of Applied Industrial Engineering and Ergonomics conducted an online survey querying specialists and managers in the year 2019. Partial results for the German metal and electrical industry are described and discussed in this contribution. They prove the increasing use of digitalization and the related expectations within this significant industrial branch.

Tim Jeske, Marlene Würfels, Frank Lennings, Marc-André Weber, Sascha Stowasser

How to Configure Assembly Assistance Systems – Results of a Laboratory Study

Manual assembly is shaped by increasing product complexity with higher scope of work and fluctuating demands. To cope with these changes, employees need to collect and process more information. Companies, therefore, face a wide range of challenges, particularly in terms of information supply. Informational assistance systems provide employees with cognitive support, helping to manage complexity. To evaluate the potentials of such systems a laboratory study is accomplished at the Laboratory for Industrial Engineering of the Ostwestfalen-Lippe University of Applied Sciences and Arts. In this paper, selected results of the laboratory study are presented and recommendations for a configuration of assembly assistance systems are derived from the results.

Sven Bendzioch, Sven Hinrichsen

Operating Assistance System for Machine Tools

The acquisition of in-process measurement data for the optimization of machined components is carried out using different measurement principles. Depending on the required information content, analyses are carried out by specialized production engineers under production-related or laboratory conditions. However, due to the complex interrelationships of different process parameters, optimization must be carried out under real production conditions. In order to achieve this, process analyses carried out on a milling machine are presented, which are performed by means of internal sensors. For use in the industrial environment, the user-oriented processing of this kind of measurement data is an essential requirement. The combination of machine-internal measured values and additional machine parameters enables an efficient and objective process optimization by qualified skilled workers on workshop level.

Alexander Mattes, Thore Gericke

Human-Robot-Collaboration in the Context of Productivity Development and the Challenges of Its Implementation: A Case Study

Human-Robot Collaboration (HRC) is associated with the digital transformation of industrial processes. This paper provides an overview of potential fields of HRC implementation followed by a six-step procedure for analyzing potential workplaces for HRC suitability. Finally, an industry-based case study is presented, in which this procedure was applied and a productivity increase as well as a reduction of physical strain on the workers was achieved. It is shown that a structured integration of HRC into existing workplaces is worthwhile to gain the best results both for workers as well as the operating corporation.

Yannick Peifer, Marc-André Weber, Tim Jeske, Sascha Stowasser

App Development via Low-Code Programming as Part of Modern Industrial Engineering Education

The Industrial Engineering Laboratory at the Ostwestfalen-Lippe University of Applied Sciences and Arts researches the user-centered, customer-oriented and efficient design of work and production systems. Its research focuses on investigating different technologies from the context of digitalization in industrial production. Software used to digitally support work processes must be adapted specifically to work systems. It is difficult to take various user requirements into account in standard software. Therefore, IT experts must continuously adapt software in order to make it suitable for different applications. One possible alternative is for software applications to be designed by industrial engineering or users themselves. In low-code programming, in contrast to classic software development, it is possible to create software applications without extensive programming knowledge. In the laboratory, a teaching unit on app development using a low-code platform was designed. It was integrated into an existing teaching concept for industrial engineers, then evaluated using a questionnaire.

Benjamin Adrian, Sven Hinrichsen, Alexander Nikolenko

Competencies and Culture for Smart Manufacturing and Industry 4.0


Leadership and Corporate Culture as Key Factors for Thriving Digital Change

Digitalization, artificial intelligence (AI) and in particular increased availability of data enables companies to develop new or changed business models and generate additional revenues. In order to use these potentials successfully, the implementation of hybrid business models and new technologies often also requires a change in the existing management and corporate culture. Nevertheless, many companies neglect to accompany technological changes by developing the skills of managers and employees. Therefore, the Institute of Applied Industrial Engineering and Ergonomics conducted a Germany-wide online survey of specialists and executives (n = 178) to analyze the status quo and the requirements for personal development and leadership of companies from the German metal and electrical industry [1, 2].

Martina Frost, Tim Jeske, Nicole Ottersböck

Systematic Competence Building as a Success Factor for Establishing Hybrid Business Models

The article describes a dialogue-oriented concept for analyzing future competence requirements for establishing new business models. The concept has been tested within three German small and medium enterprises. Based on the results it is possible to develop strategies for building up skills the enterprises will need in future. In this context, it should be noted that competence gaps on the customer side can counteract the successful establishment of new business models. A consideration of this aspect as well as possible solution approaches, which were compiled in workshops with three pilot enterprises, will be presented.

Nicole Ottersböck, Martina Frost, Tim Jeske, Veit Hartmann

How to Teach Digital Tools for Process Automation in Industrial Engineering Education

Programmable logic controllers (PLCs) have become the industry standard and have replaced hard-wired electrical devices used to control production equipment. With its advanced use, the PLC is increasingly becoming an important part of engineering. Therefore, it is essential to effectively teach students how PLCs work and how to program them through practical exercises. The goal of this paper is to present a training set used to program a PLC that fulfills the needs of industrial engineering students. The training set presented here allows students to learn about different industrial applications of PLCs, and to program such PLCs themselves.

Alexander Nikolenko, Frederic Meyer, Sven Hinrichsen

Evaluation of Augmented Reality Technologies in Manufacturing – A Literature Review

Augmented Reality (AR) applications are increasingly being used in many different areas, such as architecture, healthcare, manufacturing, and education. With AR, virtual information is merged into the real world. The use of AR systems in manufacturing opens up new ways of providing information and is shaping a new form of interaction of employees. Employees can use AR systems through devices like glasses, smartphones, tablets, and projectors, which are using voice commands and gesture recognition. These features allow hands-free working in manufacturing and offer an attractive advantage of AR glasses and projectors. Despite the apparent advantages of AR, it is used little in industry beyond the prototype stage. This could be explained that so far, the value added doesn’t seem attractive enough. Other influences may be ergonomic aspects, usability, user experience, and acceptance. This paper offers a systematic literature research of evaluation criteria of AR systems published.

Tanja Zigart, Sebastian Schlund

Organizational Justice: Does “IT” Matter? Empirical Analysis of the Influence of Information Technology on Employee Justice Perceptions

The application of technology to organizational functions has been regarded as vital in promoting organizational efficiency whiles creating a system of trust and certainty. However, the extent to which such technologies influence the perception of fairness among employees remain unknown. Adopting the theory of Sociomateriality, this study explores the relationship between the adoption of information technology (IT) and its influence on the justice perceptions of employees. Using a survey of 220 business executives, the study found that the adoption of IT was positively related to perceptions of fairness among employees. The findings of this study have theoretical implications for multi-disciplinary organizational studies as well as practical implications for 21st Century businesses as it is among the few to examine information technology with respect to its effect on behavioural outcomes at the workplace.

Maud Adjeley Ashong Elliot, Reginald Arthur

Security and Crises Management


Design of Disaster Management Intelligent System – A Review of the Applied UCD Methods

THEMIS is an Intelligent System designed to support Disaster Management in the context of disaster relief operations, contributing to reduce the decision-making burden typical of these stressful operational scenarios, which is exacerbated by the big volumes of information, often affected by uncertainty. The goal of the THEMIS project was to create a distributed system that supports: the disaster scenario information gathering and updating, by reconnaissance and response teams using mobile devices; the disaster managers, through incidents analysis and response priority advice, using desktop devices; the information sharing and the flow of georeferenced data communications between system users concerning response tasking and responders’ and incidents’ status; and the response preparedness through simulations functionalities. Particularly regarding the support to response teams’ actions, the mobile devices offer navigation aids based on maps and augmented reality.

Mário Simões-Marques, Anacleto Correia, Isabel L. Nunes

A Programmable Coprocessor Model of Human Cognition: Implications for Human Factors, Systems Interaction, and Healthcare

Decades of work have explored Type 1 (intuitive) and Type 2 (logical) thinking in people. We suggest the two work together to form a programmable co-processor which guides the way people understand and act. This model has profound implications for Human Factors design and can be applied to design how to improve quality in systems. This process affects how rapidly and readily people can operate systems or devices, and whether they will interact with them as intended or make errors due to (1) erroneous pattern matching with previous learning; (2) difficulty in creating the necessary new habits because they are so difficult, novel, or contrary to familiar behavior; or (3) cognitive overload. Lack of this perspective cripples quality in healthcare. Simple improvements could make dramatic improvements in healthcare quality and reductions in cost.

John N. Celona

Developing a Serious Game to Support Disaster Management Preparedness - A Design Thinking Approach

Disaster management is the organization, planning and application of measures preparing for, responding to and recovering from disasters. Disaster response is a complex activity where decision-makers and responders are faced with very demanding challenges. Preparedness is key to effectiveness and efficiency of response. With the increasing technological evolution observed in recent decades gamification gained new fields of application, besides entertainment. Serious games are an example of such applications. A Serious Game is a game designed with a purpose of educating or training the user in a specific domain, namely in disaster management. This paper discusses the initial stages of the development of a serious game aimed at supporting the preparedness of responders in a context of Disaster Management.

Mário Simões-Marques, Duarte Moreno, Anacleto Correia

Virtual Reality in Support of Maritime Rescue Training

One of the main missions of the maritime authorities is to provide safety for people at sea. This task often involves specialized trained professionals either lifeguards at the beaches, as well as divers assigned to search & rescue (SAR) ships and helicopters. Training professionals for rescue operations at sea is a demanding process due to the challenging requirements of the real scenarios, frequently involving harsh weather conditions. Nevertheless, such training is critical to ensure the safety of the team and ensure the success of future rescue missions. The current paper describes the process followed in the design and development of an interactive environment using virtual reality, designed for the training of maritime rescue teams. The process resorted to interdisciplinary domains, such as user experience, gamification and storytelling, for delivering a product usable, motivating, efficiency and fun. The final validation of the solution is performed through usability tests with a sample of lifeguards and divers that experienced the VR solution. The rescue professionals are submitted to a survey in order to evaluate users’ effectiveness, satisfaction and ease of learn. Results are analyzed to assessing the degree of compliance of the final product with the requirements and gather requirements for the next development iteration.

Anacleto Correia, Mário Simões-Marques, Tiago Luzes

Automatic Classification of Incidents in Coastal Zones

The increase of seasonal population on coastal areas, in certain periods of the year, as well as the diversity of events to be monitored by the authorities, raise the likelihood of marine incidents. These occurrences can have a diverse nature and severity amenable to ban the access to the beaches. This work describes the development of a low-cost system based on UAV for real time detection, recognition, and classification of several types of incidents in the coastal area and inland waters in an efficient manner. The system provides, to maritime authorities, a faster and more effective capacity for intervention in controlling maritime incidents, contributing to greater protection of public health and safety of the populations and the activities developed ashore. The system implemented a machine learning algorithm and a mobile app that help human operators monitoring maritime incidents. The development of the system was based on usability principles in order to tailor the system’s graphical interface to the first responder’s users (e.g. lifeguards, coastguard officers).

Anacleto Correia, Mário Simões-Marques, Rafael Graça

Human-Systems Design


Economic Implications of Innovative Visual Guidance System for Crane Cabins

This paper proposes innovation through implementation of a real-time computer-aided visual guidance system (VGS) which prevents crane accidents, caused by crane operator’s obstructed view, which can be the cause of collisions between load and obstacles and/or intrusions in the workspace. Proposed VGS allows predicting whether a dangerous event is going to occur and promptly alerts the crane-operator in order to let her/him taking corrective actions during the execution of crane-assisted shifting duties. VGS is equipped with interface which is designed to be simple in terms of the number of commands and easy to use in order to reduce the operators’ stress. Analyses of the economic feasibility of VGS application through cost-benefit framework follows. The payback period of invested funds for the purchase and installation of VGS is 1.5 years and installing and usage of VGS represents a very low risk investment.

Vesna Spasojevic Brkic, Nikola Dondur, Aleksandar Brkic, Martina Perisic

Principles for Human-Centered System Design in Industry 4.0 – A Systematic Literature Review

Industry 4.0 seeks to combine the real and cyber worlds by implementing cyber-physical systems (CPS) within industrial processes to create a self-managing network between humans, machines, products, and other related objects. An important part of the current transformation to Industry 4.0 is the emphasis on human-centricity, allowing for a paradigm shift from independent automated and human activities towards a human-automation symbiosis. This symbiosis is characterized by the cooperation between machines and humans in work systems and is designed not to replace the skills and abilities of humans, but rather to co-exist and assist humans in being more efficient and effective. The paper presents a systematic literature review (SLR) to identify principles for the human-centered design of future CPS. The SLR follows widely accepted methodologies and introduces concepts and visions for the elicitation of operators’ roles and needs in Industry 4.0.

Maximilian Zarte, Agnes Pechmann, Isabel L. Nunes

Employees Perception of the Implementation of Information Technology Systems in the Ghanaian Public Sector

This paper explored the consequences of employees’ perception on the digitization of financial management system in a Ghanaian public organization. Guided by the systemic-structural theory of activity, quantitative data was collected from 123 employees and analyzed morphologically to understand how employees perceived the implementation of the digitized system. The results show that while majority of employees perceived the digitization of the financial management system as useful towards improving the organization’s operational efficiency and effectiveness, a minority were skeptical. Such skepticism was cognitively translated into negative employees’ attitude towards the system’s digitization process, which negatively impacted on the successfulness of its implementation. It is concluded that the digitization of financial management systems in Ghanaian public institutions are constrained by minority employees’ skepticism, since such skepticism have cognitive implications that translates into employee’s negative perceptions of digitized systems, and which perceptions can have an impeding consequential effect on the system’s implementation process.

Mohammed-Aminu Sanda

Research on Eye Movement Parameters of Command and Control System Operator Based on Emma Model

Eye movements and movements of attention (EMMA) model divides eye movement behavior into two parts: eye movement preparation and eye movement execution. The time of eye movement preparation tends to be fixed for special groups, while the time of eye movement execution depends on the saccade speed and saccade distance of human eyes, and the saccade speed tends to be fixed for special groups. EMMA’s previous research did not involve operators of command and control system, so this paper carried out experiments on the acquisition and analysis of eye-movement preparation and eye-movement execution data for 20 people. The results of the experiment showed that the average eye movement preparation time of the command and control system operators was 136.15 ms and the average saccade speed was 1.3 ms/deg. The above research not only improves EMMA model in the field of command and control system, but also lays a foundation for later cognitive behavior modeling of operators.

Ning Li, Tuoyang Zhou, Jinshou Shi, Ziang Chen, Jincai Huang, Yanghe Feng

Green Work Environments and Workforce Productivity Among Energy Organizations in Ghana

The current work aims at exploring green workplace practices that trigger environmentally friendly changes, leading to an increase in workforces’ productivity among energy organizations. Green work settings globally, are environmentally sensitive, resource efficient and socially responsible. Green work strategies, when well deployed, can make office practices more sustainable, efficient and well suited to the complex, ever-changing world of business. Indeed, evidence abound that, modern organizations enhance business profitability and long-run marketability, while reducing costs and increasing productivity through greener practices. Research overwhelmingly shows that eco-friendly offices and green environmental practices among energy organizations translate to a happier, healthier and more efficient employees. Drawing on a qualitative, multiple-case study approach, primary data were collected from selected energy organizations in Ghana, using interviews and document archival sources. The paper showed green work environmental awareness initiatives being embarked by the energy organizations. The results further showed how the energy organizations are adopting environmentally friendly practices, resource-efficient initiatives and socially responsible actions to enhance productivity. The results also point to the various energy organizations embarking on environmental audits to understand their initial situations and using such audit results to create workplace environmental policies and procedures for sustainability that is geared towards minimizing negative impact of their activities on the environment. The paper has practical implications for clean energy, competitive and sustainable energy operations as well as a more productive workforce. The paper recommends an adoption of holistic green work environment practices as a priority to leverage lean energy production, transmission and distribution across the various energy organizations in Ghana.

Rufai Haruna Kilu, Mohammed-Aminu Sanda

Assistive Technologies, Affordance and Accessibility


Using High Fidelity Interactive Prototypes for Effective Communication to Create an Enterprise Mobile Application

This paper describes use of high fidelity prototypes and their benefits in the design process of a native iOS enterprise mobile app that provides employees with internal and external news on industry and business-related topics. As designers have various touch points including users, developers, stakeholders, and other designers, we built and used interactive, high-fidelity prototypes to enhance communication between all parties. In this paper, we use three project case studies to demonstrate the unique and beneficial role that interactive, high-fidelity prototyping plays in the design.

Soo Yun Kim, Youn Lee

No, We’re Driving! Steer or Be Steered. How to Keep UX Front and Center During a Vendor’s Demo

In enterprise companies, vendor products used in the workplace are often selected by a procurement team through a Request for Proposal (RFP). Driven by vendor claims, pricing, and show-and-tells, the process historically undervalued usability and design. This lack of attention to user experience (UX) often results in friction for users interacting with these products. We transformed the show-and-tell into a test drive, allowing us to take control of the UX our company wants for its employees. We mobilized a cross-disciplinary team to uncover solution truths and heuristic violations as they experienced the products for the first time. This paper describes our vetted methodology for supporting a UX evaluation during a vendor demo.

Phyllis Mancino, Sandy Bjorkback

What Am I Looking for? Improving User Sentiment by Enhancing Search and the Overall End User Experience in the Mobile Environment

Search is a popular method for mobile users to quickly find information. Thus, when search is poorly designed, it can make locating the right content a frustrating and inefficient experience that reduces user engagement. In this presentation, we will review several design changes, such as integrating cognitive capabilities directly into search to improve discoverability, which led to a significant increase in user sentiment. We will compare this approach to more traditional search methods through user testing and survey results.

Soo Yun Kim, Claude Elie, Jon G. Temple

Evaluation of Open Source Mobile Phone Weather Applications

The quality of our everyday lives undoubtedly depends on our alertness for upcoming weather conditions, particularly, extreme meteorological parameters. Sudden heat or cold waves, floods, thunderstorms, among others, are crucial events affecting human health and safety, that can even cause substantial economic losses. At present day, the technological advances offer practical and fast ways to access this information, such as consulting the internet and even more conveniently through weather applications. However, not all the open access applications offer the same quality of information or are presented in an intuitive manner. Therefore, in this study, selected open source mobile phone weather applications, available for Android and iOS systems, were evaluated, specifically focusing on the usability functions of these tools.

Katiuska Alexandrino, Jorge-Luis Pérez-Medina, Patricia Acosta-Vargas, Mario Gonzalez, Rasa Zalakeviciute

Accessibility Assessment of Mobile Meteorological Applications for Users with Low Vision

The World Health Organization indicates that more than one billion people worldwide live with some form of disability; almost 200 million people experience considerable difficulties in their physical functioning. In the future, disability will be a significant concern, as it tends to increase because the population is aging, and the risk of disability is higher among older adults, such as their decreasing vision known as presbyopia. On the other hand, technology has become an essential tool that brings support in daily life, such as mobile applications, with information that helps to know the weather conditions in any part of the world. However, not all meet accessibility standards for mobile applications. In this study, we took a random sample of mobile meteorological applications to assess whether they comply with the mobile accessibility considerations related primarily to the perceptible, operable, understandable and robust principles proposed in WCAG 2.1.

Patricia Acosta-Vargas, Belén Salvador-Acosta, Rasa Zalakeviciute, Katiuska Alexandrino, Jorge-Luis Pérez-Medina, Yves Rybarczyk, Mario Gonzalez

The Portable Document Format: An Analysis of PDF Accessibility

Today, PDFs are frequently used as part of the preservation of historical documents in libraries, and they are also one of the most used formats on the web when sharing information. Unfortunately, most shared documents are not accessible, especially for users with disabilities. To solve this problem, we propose to relate accessibility techniques for PDF documents in accordance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1. As a case study, we have selected a random sample of 10 documents related to the modern architectural heritage of Quito. The authors applied a combined method to check accessibility in PDFs with the help of the PDF Accessibility Checker version 3.0,The results revealed that the accessibility barriers that are repeated in most documents are related to the content and the natural language of the analyzed PDFs. The analysis applied in this investigation can contribute to future works to generate more inclusive PDF documents.

Patricia Acosta-Vargas, Mario Gonzalez, Maria Rosa Zambrano, Ana Medina, Noah Zweig, Luis Salvador-Ullauri

Web Accessibility Analysis of a Tele-Rehabilitation Platform: The Physiotherapist Perspective

Today, according to the World Health Organization’s disability reports, they indicate that more than 15% of people worldwide have some disability. This research presents an analysis of the evaluation of accessibility made using ePHoRt, a web-based platform that aims to improve the rehabilitation of patients after hip arthroplasty. To achieve this parameter, so that it is accessible to all, we apply Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1. This study presents an evaluation of the accessibility of the platform from the physiotherapist’s perspective to achieve an accessible and inclusive site. The results of this research can serve as lessons learned to motivate the developers of the ePHoRt platform towards universal access through the application of WCAG 2.1 throughout the application development cycle.

Patricia Acosta-Vargas, Belén Salvador-Acosta, Mario Gonzalez, Jorge-Luis Pérez-Medina, Gloria Acosta-Vargas, Karina Jimenes-Vargas, Yves Rybarczyk

Interactive Storytelling Books for Fostering Inclusion of Children with Special Needs

Children with Special Needs may have difficulty understanding the content of a book or associating words and sentences with their meaning. Teachers use the storytelling as a powerful literacy tool which engage children in making connections between academic content and pedagogy. This strategy is also useful to integrate the diversity of the classroom. Increasing or varying the types of materials available to children is another way to make the classroom more inclusive. This paper proposes a new approach for fostering interaction and inclusion development during shared reading. We sought to increase the interactivity of traditional tale books by incorporating elements of technology and storytelling. To develop prototypes we recruited 30 teachers divided into six groups. Each group worked with two challenges: (1) to incorporate technology into a traditional storybook and (2) create an interactive storytelling book for left-handed children. During five work sessions each group developed two proposals: The first proposal was designed with QR codes and the second with NFC tags and augmented reality patterns to facilitate left-handed activities among teachers and children. The proposals were evaluated in the classroom and with experts’ reviews, finding interesting results.

Janio Jadán-Guerrero, Sandra Sanchez-Gordon, Patricia Acosta-Vargas, Cleofe Genoveva Alvites-Huamaní, Isabel L. Nunes

Improve Accessibility and Visibility of Selected University Websites

Currently, there are millions of websites, but not all of them are accessible and visible in search engines, and in the different devices and technologies used. The purpose of this research is to 1) suggest an accessibility evaluation model according to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.1 standards; 2) correlate Webometrics and SCImago rankings to improve visibility, and 3) determine whether an accessible website can improve visibility. As a case study, the authors applied to 30 web pages from Latin American universities. The results indicate that although an educational institution is in the first rankings of the Webometrics and SCImago classification, they do not necessarily satisfy web accessibility requirements. This study can be a guide for the definition of institutional efforts to improve accessibility and visibility in the design of more inclusive and visible websites.

Patricia Acosta-Vargas, Carlos Ramos-Galarza, Luis Salvador-Ullauri, Gabriel Elías Chanchí, Janio Jadán-Guerrero

Toward Accessible Mobile Application Development for Users with Low Vision

The development of accessible mobile applications has become a great challenge for accessibility experts since aging affects users’ capabilities. Among them, the most frequent is that of visual impairment, specifically low vision. Currently, many mobile applications help with daily activities, but not all are accessible, which means that a large number of users cannot easily access and interact with them. To test accessibility in mobile applications, Google has an Accessibility Scanner for Android which is a tool that helps to verify the compliance with the accessibility guidelines proposed by the WCAG 2.1. A case study is presented that applies this tool to the development of a mobile application for the sports center “Crossfit Coyote Fitness.” This research addresses the limitations of this method, contributing to future studies related to accessibility methods for mobile applications in achieving more inclusive applications.

Patricia Acosta-Vargas, Luis Serrano-Costales, Luis Salvador-Ullauri, Isabel I. Nunes, Mario Gonzalez

Model for Generation of Profiles for Persons with Disabilities in e-Learning Environments

Education is a fundamental human right recognized in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Current e-Learning environments enable education at large scale with reduced costs. Unfortunately, persons with disabilities (PWD) experience barriers to access these platforms and the educational resources they host. To contribute with solving this problem, this study presents a model for the generation of profiles for PWD in e-Learning environments. The model proposed in this study allows registering accessibility needs and preferences regarding the use of different sensory modes for the perception and understanding of information depending on the current life situation of the PWD. The model is based on the specification IMS Access for All 3.0 PNP and the standard ISO/IEC 24751-2. The validation of the model was carried out with a high-fidelity functional prototype that was tested with automated tools and by users with blindness, low vision and color blindness.

Sandra Sanchez-Gordon, Janio Jadán-Guerrero, Hugo Arias-Flores, Isabel L. Nunes

Speech Training System for Hearing Impaired Individuals Based on Automatic Lip-Reading Recognition

Using automatic lip recognition technology to promote social interaction and integration of hearing impaired individuals and dysphonic people is one of promising applications of artificial intelligence in healthcare and rehabilitation. Due to inaccurate mouth shapes and unclear expressions, hearing impaired individuals and dysphonic people cannot communicate as normal people do. In this paper, a speech training system for hearing impaired individuals and dysphonic people is constructed using state-of-the-art automatic lip-reading technology which combines convolutional neural network (CNN) and recurrent neural network (RNN). We train their speech skills by comparing different mouth shapes between the hearing impaired individuals and normal people. The speech training system can be divided into four parts. Firstly, we create a speech training database that stores mouth shapes of normal people and corresponding sign language vocabulary. Secondly, the system implements automatic lip-reading through a hybrid neural network of the MobileNet and the Long-Short-Term Memory Networks (LSTM). Thirdly, the system finds correct lip shape matched by sign language vocabulary from the speech training database and compares the result with lip shapes of hearing impaired individuals. Finally, the system draws comparison data and similarity rate based on the size of lips of hearing impaired individuals, the angle of opening lips, and the differences between different lip shapes. Giving a standard lip-reading sequence for the hearing impaired for their learning and training. As a result, hearing impaired individuals and dysphonic people can analyze and correct their vocal lip shapes based on the comparison results. They can perform training independently to improve their mouth shape. Besides, the system can help hearing impaired individuals learn how to pronounce correctly with the help of medical devices such as cochlear implants. Experiments show that the speech training system based on automatic lip-reading recognition can effectively correct lip shape of the hearing impaired individuals while they speak and improve their speech ability without help from others.

Yuanyao Lu, Shenyao Yang, Zheng Xu, Jingzhong Wang

Contributions to Improve Accessibility and Usability of Academic Journal Management Systems. Case Study: OJS

Assistive technologies have allowed people with disabilities to overcome many barriers. For instance, people with visual disabilities are able to access information on the Web by using screen readers and generating different actions in their navigation, which would not be possible without assistive technology. The generation of accessible resources and understanding user behavior from the journal editorial process point of view have created changes in the editorial process itself, from the reception to the publication of the articles. In this digital age, in which information has become global and open to a diverse population, resources should be accessible. Unfortunately, this is not usually the case. Resources must be made accessible to people with different conditions, including visual and hearing impairments. The goal of this study is to identify the challenges faced by a person with a visual disability during the editorial process of journals on the Open Journal Systems (OJS) platform. Such challenges include understanding the layout of the elements and controls on the platform interface, creating HTML versions of academic articles, configuring journal websites, and so on. The aim of addressing these challenges is to create accessible resources that can be used by all readers of OJS journals regardless of their conditions. The information presented in this study was collected over six months, and a descriptive analysis was performed. It can be noted that some accessible resources have already been implemented, such as the presentation of academic articles in MP3 format (which can be downloaded or reproduced online) and the publication of HTML versions of complete articles with navigation levels. There is also a video resource in which authors expose their research, and the articles themselves are presented in an accessible PDF format (which respects levels of accessibility that allow greater reading enjoyment for users with vision impairments). These contributions allow people with visual disabilities to better integrate into editorial teams of scientific journals. Work continues so that the resources published on the OJS platform can reach readers with disabilities at greater regional and global levels.

Hugo Arias-Flores, Tania Calle-Jimenez, Sandra Sanchez-Gordon, Isabel L. Nunes

Using Expert Evaluation to Assess the Usability of an Educational Mobile Game for Cognitive Skills Training

The labor market inclusion of people with intellectual dis- abilities is one of the main concerns of current societies. Non-profit associations make everyday efforts to improve the living conditions of these citizens. This contribution presents a heuristic evaluation of an educational mobile game helping social workers and health professionals in their training in order to incorporate into the labor market citizens with intellectual disabilities. The application provides technological support for cognitive skills training and is aimed at people with mild to moderate intellectual disability and who do not present physical difficulties that prevent the normal use of a mobile device. We use a development process that combines the iPlus methodology together with a collaborative user-centered approach. Suggested recommendations based on the results can improve the usability of the game developed.

Jorge-Luis Pérez-Medina, Patricia Acosta-Vargas, Carlos Sampedro, Andrés Paredes, Mayra Carrión, Marco Santórum, Ligia-Pilar Samaniego-Santillán, Verónica-Gabriela Maldonado-Garcés, Carlos Corrales-Gaitero, Nelly-Yolanda Ortiz-Carranco

Assessing Visual Engagement for Visuomotor Skills Rehabilitation Training in Infants

Simple visual stimuli, with bright colours and dynamically evolving over time, are among the most effective mechanisms through which to engage a baby´s attention. In earlier work, we have developed a visual stimulating tool to aid rehabilitation programs, which can be used with infants of up to 2 years of age. The feedback from the early use of the device has been rather positive. Yet, until now, there was no explicit way to assess the degree of engagement of the infant’s attention, or even when the focus of said attention moved away from the stimulus. Hence, it has been difficult to understand whether the proposed specific rehabilitation procedure has failed, for a given infant, or the loss of attention led to a decrease in efficiency in the intervention. In the current work we develop and exploit a simple eye tracking tool, based on a laptop’s own webcam, to evaluate the child’s loss of attention to visual stimuli. The main differentiating criterion, set forth for this eyetracker, is that it should work without an explicit calibration stage. The use of the specific camera is motivated with the fact that the laptop can be used for visual stimuli deliver, as well as a series of data processing steps. The results attained thus far were rather encouraging, leading even to a subsequent study, replacing infants by adults undergoing a rehabilitation program, after suffering from brain stroke.

Pedro Dias, Ana Ferreira, Claudia Quaresma, Carla Quintão, Ricardo Vigário

Human Systems Design in Transportation Applications


Human Systems Design Towards an Integrative Conceptual Framework

Conceiving artefacts and tools is one of the major key characteristics of the human species. Since the beginning of automation and even more since the spreading of computer science, this activity has become more and more challenging especially through the analysis of the different interaction modes between the artifacts and the human. Nowadays, developing an artifact that must interact with a human is requiring an integrative point of view which must include biological, physical and cybernetical concerns. The current norms aimed at characterizing the quality and the relevance of human machine interface are generally limited to standard interfaces and/or to specific domain. The goal of this paper is to propose an integrative conceptual framework and ergonomic design criteria for developing human systems.

Didier Fass, J. M. Christian Bastien, Franck Gechter

Assessing Cognitive Processing and Human Factors Challenges in NextGen Air Traffic Control Tower Team Operations

Previous research of Terminal Radar Control Facilities and Standard Terminal Automation Replacement Systems interactions by the authors examined how combined NextGen digitized technology affects air traffic controller functions. Applying their updated SHELL model, human factors implications on the Tower Team before and after implementing NextGen technology were examined, focusing on cognitive loading and automated functions affecting each team member. A survey examined where cognitive difficulties occur when controllers are responsible for multiple screen views, remote airfields or helipads, and digitized cameras and blind spots. Scanning challenges were identified where local traffic, ground operations, and data converge onto one screen, and when attention is diverted to distant screens. Also studied were automatic aircraft handoffs and potential for missed handoffs, and, assessing changes from voice communication to text messaging for human error. Findings indicated a necessity for controllers to manage balanced tasking, vigilance pacing, and resource management.

Mark Miller, Sam Holley, Bettina Mrusek, Linda Weiland

Multimodal In-vehicle Touch Screens Interactive System’s Design and Evaluation

In pursuit of beautiful, clean, and easing the control platform of numerous buttons, in-vehicle tough screens are arising. However, many studies have shown that, in-vehicle secondary tasks adversely affect driving safety, especially touch screens need a long-time focus but offer little feedback. In this paper, a new design of in-vehicle touchscreens’ interface system is proposed. The new design introduced the concept of multimodal (vision, auditory and haptic) and used sliding gestures to interaction. Auditory and haptic are fully utilized to transfer information and provide feedback, attempting to decrease the occupation of vision recourses when driving. This article also conducted a driving simulation experiment to make an evaluation of the design. Experiment data indicated that, the new design can realize eyes free without influencing the accuracy and completion time of secondary tasks, enhanced user experience meanwhile. This design will provide reference to the more intelligent and humanistic vehicle central control touchscreen.

Jingyue Zheng, Wei Zhang

Using VR Generated Pedestrian Behaviors in Autonomous Vehicle Simulations

Simulation is a requirement for the safe and effective deployment of autonomous vehicle software given the wide range of possible scenarios which a vehicle can experience. These simulations need to accurately represent interactions with not just other vehicles, but also pedestrians. Humans often do not move in a perfectly linear way when interacting with the objects around them. Their position and rotations change as their focus and interest is piqued in various directions. Data collected by Deb et al. shows pedestrians in VR do not react the same to autonomous vehicles as they do to manned vehicles. Therefore, it is not suitable nor desirable to use straight line paths with pedestrian animations in simulation environments. In this experiment, we leverage the position and rotation data collected by Deb et al. during VR pedestrian crosswalk studies as a source for realistic pathing behaviors for animated pedestrians in the Mississippi Autonomous Vehicle Simulator.

Christopher R. Hudson, Shuchisnigdha Deb, Christopher Goodin, Daniel W. Carruth

Interaction Design in Educational Applications


Development of Real-Time Learning Analytics Using Scraping and Pivot Tables

In a PC classroom attended by a large number of students, the author conducted a face-to-face, blended lesson using Moodle and proposes a method to efficiently analyze student learning logs. The system (TSCS Monitor) allows the user to visualize the analyzed results in a time-series presented in both table and graph form. In this paper, real-time processing using scraping was integrated to the above functions in order to reduce the burden of system operation on the teacher and obtain analysis results faster while conducting classes. With the integrated scraping function, it is now possible to automatically download Moodle course logs. Teachers can check the clickstream of course materials in real-time in a time-series cross-section table simply by starting TSCS Monitor during class. The author tested the system, released the analysis results to the students, and assessed the effects on the students via a class evaluation questionnaire.

Konomu Dobashi

Phonological Awareness Intervention and Basic Literacy Skill Development with Kiteracy-PiFo

Phonological awareness refers to a global awareness of the sound structures of speech and the ability to manipulate those structures. Children with phonological awareness problems may have difficulty associating environmental sounds with appropriate objects and they generally do not play with sounds. This paper describes the manufacturing process of an educational kit to strengthen phonological awareness skills. Kiteracy-PiFo is a kit based on the literacy method Picto Phonic (PiFo), which is made up of one teddy bear with a built-in RFID reader and 30 tags that represent the letters of the alphabet. The kit was designed to carry out a longitudinal study in order to evaluate the effectiveness of interventions for children between 5 and 6 years old. In the manufacture of the kit participated 70 students, 5 from Computer Science Career, 20 from Digital and Multimedia Design Career, 45 from Psychology Career and 30 from Master in Education, mention Innovation and Leadership. All of them worked with 7 teachers who guided the development and intervention activities. A total of 25 kit were built, 5 of which were destined at 5 schools in Cartago-Costa Rica, 10 schools in Quito-Ecuador and 10 schools in Ambato-Ecuador. These kits were used to work on the development of phonological awareness with 667 children.

Janio Jadán-Guerrero, Carlos Ramos-Galarza, María de los Angeles Carpio-Brenes, Tania Calle-Jimenez, Luis Salvador-Ullauri, Isabel L. Nunes

Analysis of the Behavior of a User’s Sensory Mechanisms During the Interaction Processes with an Object of the New Media and Its Work System

It has been detected through dynamic networks that the activation of certain sensory mechanisms in the processes of interaction with the YouTube Object generate breakpoints in the Focal Attention Processes aimed at the Visual Symbols. Likewise, it was detected that the user’s interoceptive responses in the interaction processes with the device’s work system were related to the spatial location of the visual symbols, and the interoceptive responses in the interaction processes with the YouTube Object were determined by the sensitive qualities of visual symbols. Also the studies showed the existence of a possible relationship with the interoceptive responses, the behavior patterns of a user and the Focal Attention processes delegated to visual symbols. Therefore, it is intended to promote reflections and enabling knowledge on the use of the objects of new media based on the interaction processes generated by a user.

Lorena Olmos Pineda, Jorge Gil Tejeda

Complex Human-System Interactions


Applying Haptics to Interactive Large Screen Displays

Within industries such as nuclear, petroleum and chemical processes, monitoring and control is done from a centralized control room. The introduction of individual digital workstations, replacing analogue panels with buttons and knobs has resulted in two challenges: i) lack of haptic feedback of actions, and ii) decreased transparency in team members’ actions. This paper proposes that a handheld haptic device, used directly in a large-screen display could mitigate these challenges. We present lessons learned from a working prototype connected to a nuclear simulator. Requirements for the prototype included a scratch free display surface with built in precision position tracking; and a haptic device with two channels for interaction. We found that the use of haptic feedback is feasible and strengthens the experience of direct interaction. Nonetheless, it was challenging to perform actions requiring rotational movement. Further work should include iterative user studies.

Alf Ove Braseth, Aleksander Toppe, Hans Olav Randem, Alexandra Fernandes

Piloting the Use of an Upper Limb Passive Exoskeleton in Automotive Industry: Assessing User Acceptance and Intention of Use

The exoskeletons are being developed and recommended worldwide as wearable devices that could be used by workers exposed to demanding working conditions, such as overhead work. Many studies, designed for laboratory research, have been carried out so far and most of them came to the same kind of conclusions. With these findings it is expected that user acceptance (UA) and intention of use (IU) would not be a concern. This study was designed to assess UA and IU of an upper limb exoskeleton, Skelex MARK 1.3®, in a group of workstations, where technical and organizational measures implemented were not enough to reduce the exposure risk to overhead work and/or work above shoulder level, from an automotive industry assembly line. The exoskeleton was tested in 6 workstations, by 88 workers, during 4 consecutive weeks, since UA and IU are influenced by factors which only exist in real working scenarios.

Gabriela Ferreira, Jacqueline Gaspar, Carlos Fujão, Isabel L. Nunes

Reliability in Extreme Isolation: A Natural Language Processing Tool for Stress Self-assessment

Life in isolation is a condition that affects more people every day. From isolation of people in case of an epidemic (Ebola, Coronavirus, ..) to mineworkers or scientist in the Antarctic environment, it is currently well established that extreme isolation is a stressor element which negatively affects human creating stress and social conflict. Living in outer space is one of the most extreme forms of isolation that can be used as a test bench for isolation research. Crews in space are expected to be able to manage independently stress and social conflict problems to be highly reliable and autonomous. Human natural language (NL) has the potential of being a valuable source of information on crew-members stress and reliability in isolation. Based on the use of NL, the PSI (Performance and Stress in Isolation) research group is developing an Artificial Intelligent tool for the autonomous monitoring of stress and reliability. In order to develop this tool, the first step (here presented) is to investigate the correlation of NL with stress and reliability within the PSI experiment. The experiment consisted of three tasks to be performed periodically during the isolation: 1. Analysis of free written communication (NL); 2. Short self-reference questionnaire; and 3. Detection of heart rate and blood pressure values. In this paper we present the preliminary data collected from 29 participants (17 males and 12 females) to 6 space analogue missions accomplished in Europe, the USA and Israel in the 2016 – 2019 time frames. That is, so far, the largest database ever analyzed of this kind. The results are coherent with what is described in the literature about NLP content and style analysis, with the novelty of the correlations found with the cardiovascular parameters, thus reinforcing the perspective of applying a NLP AI system for supporting stress management in extreme isolation contexts from Space to Earth spin off.

Alessandro Alcibiade, Irene Lia Schlacht, Francesco Finazzi, Massimiliano Di Capua, Giacomo Ferrario, Giorgio Musso, Bernard Foing

Occupational Hazards in a Pathological Anatomy Service

Based on an Ergonomic Work Analysis the objectives of this study were to assess and evaluate the working conditions of a Pathological Anatomy Service (PAS) in a Private Portuguese Hospital. Twelve workers participated in the study and six tasks were analyzed and assessed with the RULA method. The main results of this study have highlighted that the work done in this PAS entails risk factors probably responsible for the prevalence of musculoskeletal symptoms and the high levels of eyestrain. According to RULA results, the risk for the development of MSDs is present in almost all tasks suggesting that investigation and adjustments in the work situation are required. Considering the chemical risk assessment, several nonconformities were found in terms of labeling, storage, workplace and worker’s training. Globally, the obtained results are in accordance with those reported by other studies.

Filipa Carvalho, Rita Martins, Rui B. Melo

Architecture for a Services System Based on Sharing Economy

The high rate of unemployment in Ecuador requires new opportunities to create job offers. We have observed the business model of Uber and Airbnb, there is still many opportunities to create the sharing economy. In this document, we present a clear and innovative architecture to build a business including sharing economy. A system for applying our proposed architecture was developed. Our system monitors and channels the activities of the participants, both the provider of the service and the users of the service. Finally, we evaluate our proposal through a survey aimed to providers and users.

Maritzol Tenemaza, Tinoco Javier, Tapia Rodney, Sergio Luján-Mora

The RENAULT Ergonomic Assessment Method V3: Comparing Results with the OCRA Checklist and the Strain Index Methods

Work related Musculoskeletal disorders affect millions of workers in Europe and cost employers billions of Euros. Concerned about this problematic, the Renault Group has developed methodologies to assess the risks associated with jobs that integrate repetitive tasks such as the Ergonomic Assessment Method V3 (EAM-v3). Bearing in mind that the assessment of certain jobs by the EAM-v3 does not seem to fully reflect the concerns and the complaints reported by the operators performing them, it seemed appropriate to evaluate these jobs with other methods available in the literature. The main objective of this study was to compare the EAM-v3 results with those obtained with the OCRA Checklist Index (OCRA) and the Strain Index (SI). Five workstations were selected and assessed with the three methods aforementioned. The results obtained showed that in 60% of the evaluated cases, the EAM-v3 was robust enough to reflect the concerns of the respective workers, since the results obtained were, at least, similar or even higher than those obtained by the OCRA and SI methods. In 40% of the cases, the EAM-v3 was less protective resulting in lower risk levels.

Filipa Carvalho, Susana Silva, Rui B. Melo

Ergonomics in Mobile Fingerprint Recognition Systems: A User Interaction Evaluation

Fingerprint recognition represents the most installed recognition modality in modern mobile devices. Currently, there are thousands and thousands of smartphones equipped with fingerprint sensors; the type of sensor and its position on the device changes depending on the model. The fingerprints sensors are typically positioned in the home button (front side), even if sensors embedded on the backside or on the lateral side are equally common. In this paper, we research how the ergonomics of the mobile fingerprint systems influences the user experience and consequently the outcome of the identification. For this reason, we assessed the user interaction with a fingerprint recognition system installed in 3 smartphones (differentiated by the position of their fingerprint sensors). Data collected during the experiment let us analyse how the position of the sensors changes the recognition system’s performance and the user feelings while completing a biometric authentication.

Barbara Corsetti, Raul Sanchez-Reillo, Richard M. Guest

A Life Cycle Assessment Framework-Based Method for Ergonomic Indicator Selection for Complex Human-Machine Systems

To guide the implementation of an ergonomic evaluation in the life cycle of complex human-machine systems, it is necessary to choose suitable indicators for the evaluation. In the present research, we establish an ergonomic indicator evaluation system based on a life cycle assessment framework. Within the structural framework, we propose midpoint and endpoint impact categories for ergonomic evaluation. Taking the evaluation goals as endpoint impact categories, a midpoint impact category groups different indicators into one effect in the evaluation goals. We score the indicators by measuring the relationships between the indicators and the impact categories. Based on the scores of the indicators, the representative ergonomic indicators can be selected. At the end of the manuscript, we use the framework to conduct the selection of ergonomic indicators for a train dispatching command system. This study proposes a structural framework that ensures the validity of the selected indicators.

Aobo Wang, Beiyuan Guo, Yuan Liu, Tiancheng Huang

Research on the Parameters of Human - Machine Interaction of Command and Control System Operator Based on Fitts Law

Fitts proposed the Fitts Law, a human motion behavior prediction model based on information theory, which established the functional relationship between motion time, motion amplitude and target area width, and became one of the few quantitative models in the field of human-computer interaction. However, the parameters related to devices of a and b need to be tested in combination with specific population and devices. Based on the hardware equipment such as mouse and eye tracker, this paper carried out the experimental design and implementation of interactive motion data collection for command and control system operators, and collected data of 20 people in total. The analysis of experimental data shows that the average value of 20 person-times is: a = 160.7, b = 227. The above research not only improves Fitts Law in the field of command and control system, but also provides a quantitative model targeted at specific groups for later cognitive and behavioral modeling of operators and human-machine interface design.

Ning Li, YingWei Zhou, Bei Zhang, Qiuyu Liu, Jincai Huang, Yanghe Feng


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