Considering cognitive aspects in designing cyber physical systems
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Considering cognitive aspects in designing cyber-physical systems :. an emerging need for transdisciplinarity. Wilfred van der Vegte and Regine Vroom Delft University of Technology Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering Department of Design Engineering.

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Considering cognitive aspects in designing cyber physical systems

Considering cognitive aspects in designing cyber-physical systems:

an emerging need for transdisciplinarity

Wilfred van der Vegte and Regine Vroom

Delft University of Technology

Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering

Department of Design Engineering


Considering cognitive aspects in designing cyber physical systems

Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering


Contents

Contents

  • Cyber-physical systems

  • CPSs design – involved disciplines

  • Disciplinary approaches: mono, multi, inter, intra, and trans

  • Flavours of transdisciplinarity

  • Two directions of research:

    • Simulating cognitive loads and processing times

    • Informing systems and mental models

  • Concluding remarks


Cyber physical systems cpss

Cyber-Physical systems (CPSs)

CPSs are integrations of computation with physical processes, in which embedded computers and networks monitor and control the physical processes, usually with feedback loops where physical processes affect computations and vice versa.

Example of a CPS:Swarming Micro Air VehicleNetwork (SMAVNET) @ EPFL, CH

  • Rapidly creates communicationnetworks for rescuers in disasterareas

  • Sensor networking technologies

  • Swarm intelligence


Cpss design @ ide involved disciplines

CPSs design @ IDE– involved disciplines

  • Industrial Design Engineering (IDE),

  • Cognitive Psychology,

  • Psychophysiology,

  • Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

  • Disciplines commonly involved in an interdisciplinary faculty of IDE such as:

    • Materials technology

    • Manufacturing technology

    • Human factors

    • Electronics

    • Mechanical engineering

    • Marketing

    • etc.


Addressing cognitive aspects

Addressing cognitive aspects

  • In predecessors of CPSs (mechatronic/smart systems, etc.) ICT and physics were already heavily involved.CPSs will increasingly incorporate (distributed) artificial cognitionin interaction with human cognitionHandling cognitive psychology issues will be a key challenge in the near future of CPS development

  • Cognition-related issues:

    • Allocation of cognitive tasks between human and CPS

    • Cognitive matching of inputs/outputs between human and CPS

    • Preventing information overload of human users

    • Enabling CPSs as safety-critical systems

  • Objective: cognitive symbiosis between human and CPS


Transdisciplinary vs intra inter and multidisciplinary

Transdisciplinary vs. intra-, inter- and multidisciplinary

Flavours of transdisciplinarity

inter

other area of

science

(e.g., medical)

engineering

science

multi

mono

trans

intra

intra

inter

other area of development

(e.g., healthcare)

engineering

design

multi

mono

mono

intra

intra

end users/consumers

(e.g., product users)

end users/consumers

(e.g., patients)


Considering cognitive aspects in designing cyber physical systems

Flavours of transdisciplinarity

other area of

science

(e.g., medical)

engineering

science

transdisciplinary design

=

transdisciplinary research

other area of development

(e.g., healthcare)

engineering

design

end users/consumers

(e.g., product users)

end users/consumers

(e.g., patients)


Two directions of research

Two directions of research

  • Simulating cognitive loads and processing times

  • Informing systems and mental models


1 0 simulating cognitive loads and processing times

1.0 Simulating cognitive loads and processing times

  • Key application area: deployment of CPSs as safety-critical systems

  • Revision of decision-making responsibilitiesCPS  human

  • Simulation of human mental processes together with models of products and systems (in particular, CPS)

  • Goal: evaluate CPS during development identify bottlenecks to be addressed in the CPS’s designincluding service design, task design/allocation


1 1 human cyber physical systems how can we simulate

1.1 Human-cyber-physical systems – how can we simulate?

  • Interactive simulation vs. fully virtual simulation:

    • Safety-critical systems  identification of incidents happening once in ~1,000 years.

    • Interactive human-in-the-loop simulation must be real-time,but we cannot run a simulation for 1,000 years!

    •  we need faster-than-real-time simulation  fully virtual, even humans

human

CPS; environment

Use simulation tools common in embedded systems engineering (procedural logic, state machines)

How to simulate human thinking and human reasoning?

information processing

Avoid time-consuming physics simulations based on geometric discretisation (e.g., FEM): use simplified models instead.

physics

Take shortcuts: disregard perception, motor skills, etc.


1 2 simulating human thinking and human reasoning

1.2 Simulating human thinking and human reasoning

  • Two aspects:logic of decision making and processing time of decision making

  • Logic of decision making:

    • What action is taken under what condition?e.g. “IF cup is full THEN retrieve cup from machine”:straightforward execution of ‘normal’ use,assuming a particular history of preceding events.

    • But can a simulation predict a user acting according tothe production rule “IF cup is full THEN stick finger in it”? →unlikely!

    • Yet we can try to generate typical aberrations from ‘regular use’:so-called error phenotypes (Hollnagel):actions accidentally in wrong order, accidental repetition, etc.,by applying systematic variations


1 3 simulating human thinking and human reasoning processing time

1.3 Simulating human thinking and human reasoning: processing time

  • Processing time:How long does it take to accomplish a given action, taking into account aspects such as memory retrieval, memory capacity, learning, multitasking, distraction, etc.

  • These aspects can be simulated using cognitive architectures such as ACT-R

  • A cognitive architecture is

    • a blueprint of the human mind

    • based on findings from brain science

    • filled with psychologically validated task modelsexpressed as production rules


1 4 act r cognitive architecture

1.4 ACT-R cognitive architecture

ACT-R

simulation

(human)

intentional module

declarative module

(

temporal

central production

(

not identified

)

cortex

/

hippocampus

)

  • ACT-R models are task specific, programmed in LISP by skilled, dedicated cognitive scientists

  • Most tasks require scientists to create new customized models, that have to be validated in laboratory experiments with human subjects

  • Intensive collaboration between cognitive scientists and designers of CPSs seems inevitable

system

goal buffer

(

dorsolateral

retrieval buffer

(

ventrolateral

(

basal ganglia

)

prefrontal cortex

)

prefrontal cortex

)

motor module

(

motor

motor buffer

visual buffer

visual module

cortex

/

cerebellum

)

(

motor cortex

)

(

parietal cortex

)

(

occipital cortex

)

simulation

ofCPS &

environment

external world


1 5 example cps for simulating cognitive loads processing times

1.5 Example CPS for simulating cognitive loads & processing times:

Advanced support of emergency response


2 0 informing systems mental models

2.0 Informing systems & mental models

Informing CPSs (e.g. informing public traffic systems)

  • aims to find novel means to inform users and to find new symbiotic relations between human and cyber-physical systems;

  • based on which designers can be supported in the early stages of CPS development;

  • the objective is to avoid situations where users are mentally or perceptually overloaded and to precisely give the information that will help to take a right decision to react.


2 1 project purpose

2.1 Project purpose

The purpose of this project is to gain a better understanding in the manner in which MMs influence our interaction with the informing part of CPSs, and to provide guidelines for designers based on these insights

Current detection e.g. through motion detection, smart phone connection, id tag, …

Human output detected by a CPS

Cyber-Physical

System

Human

“system”

Human output

Current situation

Brain (cognition, including knowledge, experiences, reasoning)

CPS input

Processing

Sensors /detectors

CPS outputadapted to the cognitive capabilities of individual user(s) in a specific situation

Human input

CPS informs (or offers other functionality) to human

Senses


2 2 informing systems mental models

2.2 Informing systems & mental models

Goal: Include cognitive insights to influence the adaptability of CPSs.

Approach: Study the behavior of mental models

Cyber-Physical

System

Human

“system”

Mental model: internal representation that people hold of an external reality that allows them to explain, interact, and predict that reality

(from cognitive psychology)

Human output

Future situation

Brain (cognition, including knowledge, experiences, reasoning)

CPS input

Processing

Mental model

Sensors /detectors

Mental model

CPS outputadapted to the cognitive capabilities of individual user(s) in a specific situation

Human input

Senses


2 3 future situation

2.3 Future situation

Cyber-Physical

System

Human

“system”

Human output

Current situation

Designerly cognitive

insights

Brain (cognition, including knowledge, experiences, reasoning)

CPS input

Processing

Mental model

Sensors /detectors

CPS outputadapted to the cognitive capabilities of individual user(s) in a specific situation

Human input

Senses

precisely give the information that will help to take a right decision to react

Design Engineering

CognitiveScience


2 4 designerly cognitive insights

2.4 Designerly cognitive insights

  • Study behaviour of mental models:

    • Is there inertia when switching from one mental model towards another?

      • E.g. if an unexpected situation occur, will there be a different reaction on the same situation if the person was reading an exciting book than when he was playing football? Difficulty: perception influences can’t be reset (“undo” or “delete”)

    • How to identify inaccuracies and gaps in a mental model (i.e. in a person’s knowledge and experience)?

      • Mental models are inaccurate and incomplete. Insights in how to determine the gaps and the faults incorporate clues to better inform people.


2 4 designerly cognitive insights cont d

2.4 Designerly cognitive insights cont’d

  • Study relationships between mental states and cognition at one side and physical human data (facial expressions, gestures, heart beat etc., i.e. psychophysiology) on the other side.

    • In addition to search for direct determination methods, indirect measurements might be useful: some facial expression may indicate that a person doesn’t understand a message for example.

  • How to effectively address the major gaps and faults in a mental model?

    • Effect of senses to address, effect of amplitude of the message (audio volume, pressure level in haptic information, etc.)

      The bridge towards guidelines for designers of informing CPSs: insight in the mental model states and behaviour will enable designers to design CPSs with adaptive capabilities on the user’s cognition.


  • Concluding remarks cognitive modelling

    Concluding remarks – cognitive modelling

    • Two research directions

      • one to allow virtual testing of CPSs by designers, taking into account speed and capacity of human cognition in the interaction with CPSs

      • one to provide knowledge to designers, so that CPSs can adapt themselves to mental models maintained by their users

    • Both entail transdisciplinary collaboration with cognitive scientists –from disjunct research communities with different scientific approaches

      • Cognitive architectures are based on empirical laboratory experiments

      • Mental models are captured based on interviews

    • Common goal: achieve symbiotic relationship between human and CPS


    Concluding remarks transdisciplinary design or research

    Concluding remarks – Transdisciplinary design (or: research)

    Defining what is transdisciplinary and what is not, is probably not as simple as we have suggested:

    • Knowledge value chain often more complex thanresearch  development/design  application

    • What is one discipline? How to deal with hierarchies of disciplines?(e.g. engineering electrical, mechanical, civil, ...)

    • If we have learned enough from working with expert scientists from another discipline, can we eventually do the trick ourselves?Does it mean that a new discipline has formed and the activity is no longer ‘transdisciplinary’? If so, is that bad?


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