Browse Publications Technical Papers 2002-01-2501
2002-07-15

An Index of Habitability 2002-01-2501

Perhaps the greatest challenge facing the Human Factors profession is the ability to communicate effectively with their customers. One example is the NASA Standard 3000, which is an extensive compilation of human factors information, but an inefficient tool in the design and evaluation processes. These shortcomings are indicated by the need for interpretation of much of the material by human factors specialists and the amount of time spent dealing with “waivers.” An alternative approach is being developed which provides specific quantitative targets (engineering specifications) for design and evaluation, coupled with a process of continuous improvement. The targets are developed for measurable aspects of the environment or human-system interface, by a consensus of human factors, domain experts and user representatives. This participative approach will ensure “buy-in” by all parties ahead of time and thus reduce the need for waivers. Although variable interactions are key to human factors evaluation, individual factors are often manipulated independently during design. Similarly, this measurement process focuses on individual factors, but provides a clear visual presentation of how these factors may interact.

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