S1: User Interface

The goal of Sub-Project S1 is to enable task- and user-friendly human-machine interfaces for situational ubiquitous systems. In contrast to the classical human-computer-interaction, in this case it does not only take place by the keyboard, pointing device and monitor, but via specialized interfaces. Passive objects can also trigger interactions, which is something the user is not necessarily accustomed to.

The adaptation also needs more explanation and getting used to. Under the aspect of social compatibility, it also has to avoid creating complex networked systems that only technology-friendly experts can make use of. Instead, they must be accessible and user-friendly for potential heterogeneous user groups, including those without technical background or expertise.

Following a model-based anthropocentric approach, in this Sub-Project the three fields tasks, human factors and environmental conditions are considered in an integrated manner.

To carry out each task, the first step is to analyze problems, possible solutions (e.g. individual vs. cooperative) and technical support in cooperation with the T-projects. This is in order to estimate potential information needs and actions on an abstract level and to coordinate the problem with the interaction task in the third step. Now the task-oriented utility of the technical systems can be  addressed.

A user model for ubiquitous systems must be developed which at its core considers the human influencing factors and takes into account the interpersonal differences (e. g. age differentiation) and intrapersonal variability (e.g. different user-experiences with the system).

In addition to this categories and value ranges of perceptive, cognitive and motor abilities are deduced for the interaction, knowledge, experience and habits of users are considered by the model and are integrated in the context of the ergonomic analysis of exercise and stress of the user (e.g. physical; cognitive, emotional).

With regard to the environmental conditions for the ergonomics, the physical factors (e.g. noise, light, temperature) have to be modeled and considered for the interaction (e.g. which human modality is addressed in which situational context). The environmental conditions also include the existing technical infrastructure (e.g. data and sensor network, energy supply) and the locations of machines and persons.

Analysis and anthropocentric modeling, prototypical realization and experimental examination of the mentioned aspects should provide empirical secured rules of design for the user-interfaces, as well as the interactions with situational ubiquitous systems as the final result of subproject S1, so that these systems are task appropriate and ergonomic and useful for the individual user.