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Ergonomics, Standards and Law. Standards and Metrics. Standardisation generally makes people’s lives safer and easier Standardisation benefits trade A key aspect of standardisation is Quality Assurance The main international organisations are

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standards and metrics
Standards and Metrics
  • Standardisation generally makes people’s lives safer and easier
  • Standardisation benefits trade
  • A key aspect of standardisation is Quality Assurance
  • The main international organisations are
    • ISO (International Standards Organisation) covering mechanical aspects
    • IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) covering electrical aspects
  • Computing has a joint commission (JTC1)
  • Governments, professional bodies, companies also produce standards
hci standards
HCI Standards
  • HCI standards are important, but difficult to pin down because of the rich variability of human beings
  • ISO9241 addresses ergonomics’ requirements for work with VDU’s
    • Not legally binding
  • Council Directive from EC addresses minimum safety and health standards for work with visual display equipment
  • EC Directive is legally binding;
    • unless specifically legislated, standards are not
  • House style guides are designed to provide conformity to minimum standards across a family of products (e.g., MS User Interface Guidelines)
    • Usually enforceable only through management policy
  • Studies the manner in which the anatomical, physical and psychological needs of workers relate to their immediate working environment
  • Focuses on HCI and how it can be designed to achieve
    • worker satisfaction
      • often the last to be considered, if at all
    • worker safety
    • worker health
    • worker productivity
computer hazards
Computer Hazards
  • Several areas known to have a direct effect on users’ health
    • RSI
    • CTS (Carpal Tunnel Syndrome)
      • both caused by repeated flexing of wrist while using fingers - damages the medial nerve
    • Lower back injuries
ec directive minimum requirements
EC Directive - Minimum Requirements
  • Equipment
    • Use of equipment must not be a source of risk to workers
  • Display Screen
    • Characters well-defined, clearly formed, adequate size and spacing between characters and lines
    • stable screen image, no flickering
    • adjustable brightness and contrast esp. to ambient conditions; no reflective glare
    • display unit must swivel and tilt easily
    • must be possible to use a separate base or adjustable table for the screen
ec directive minimum requirements7
EC Directive - Minimum Requirements
  • Keyboard
    • tiltable, separate from screen
    • provide support for hands and arms of operator
    • matt surface to avoid reflective glare
    • arrangement and characteristics to facilitate use
    • key symbols shall be adequately contrasted and readable
  • Work desk or surface
    • sufficiently large, low-reflectance surface and allow flexible arrangement of screen, keyboard, documents and related equipment
ec directive minimum requirements8
EC Directive - Minimum Requirements
  • Work Chair
    • stable; allowing freedom of movement and comfort
    • adjustable seat height
    • adjustable seat back (height and tilt)
    • footrests must be made available for optional use
ec directive minimum requirements9
EC Directive- Minimum Requirements
  • Space requirements
    • workstation designed to allow user to change position and vary movement
  • Lighting Requirements
    • appropriate contrast between screen and background environment
    • glare minimised by co-ordinating workstation positions with artificial light sources
  • Reflections and Glare
    • artificial and natural light sources arranged to eliminate glare
    • windows fitted with adjustable coverings
ec directive minimum requirements10
EC Directive - Minimum Requirements
  • Noise
    • noise emitted from workstations should not distract attention or disturb speech
  • Heat
    • equipment must not cause excess heat which discomforts workers
  • Radiation
    • reduced to negligible levels
  • Humidity
    • adequate level shall be established and maintained
ec directive minimum requirements11
EC Directive - Minimum Requirements
  • Operator/Computer Interface
    • software must be suitable for the task
    • software must be easy to use and, where appropriate, adaptable to the user’s level of knowledge or experience; no quantitative or qualitative checking facility may be used without knowledge of workers
    • systems must provide feedback to workers on their performance
    • systems must display information in a format and at a pace which are adapted to operators
    • The principles of software ergonomics must be applied, in particular to human data processing
health and safety display screen equipment regulations 1992
Health and Safety (Display Screen) Equipment Regulations 1992
  • “software must be suitable for the task”
  • “software must be easy to use”
  • “systems must display information in a format and at a pace which are adapted to users”
  • “the principles of software ergonomics must be applied”