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Designing human–machine interfaces for naturalistic perceptions, decisions and actions occurring in emergency situations
journal contributionposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 by M Rahman, Ganesh Balakrishnan, T Bergin
Humans experience emotional arousal, when threat to life and limb is imminent, such as in high stakes, emergency situations that occur in sociotechnical systems like fire fighting, aviation, combat, etc. Emotional arousal has both advantages and disadvantages. On the downside, it introduces perceptual distortions and biases and inability to process symbolic information and alters motor abilities. As emergency human–machine interfaces (HMIs) will be used to bring a system under control, i.e. to avoid or minimise losses, they should be designed to accommodate the human capacities that have been altered by danger-induced emotional arousal. A model called direct perception–action coupling (DPAC) that combines direct perception and embodied cognition, which is not predicated on higher cognitive functions, has been developed to describe the available capacities of an operator under stress. Finally, the conceptual application of human performance theories under stress, through the DPAC model, to design emergency HMIs is discussed with examples.