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Theses repository

Design for Usability

focus on the physical handling of the products

Design for Usability

Year: 1999

Author: Nielsen, Pi

Supervisor: Andreasen, Mogens Myrup

Institution: Department of Mechanical Engineering, Section for Engineering Design and Product Development, Technical University of Denmark

Pages: 200

ISBN: 87-90130-24-3

Abstract

Danfoss products involve both software related use and handling of the products' mechanical aspects. Handling is in general considered a more simple form of use, than software related use. But usability problems, in handing situations, are experienced with Danfoss products. Usability in handling situations are not taken care of automatically in the design process, tools for this purpose are required.
The main objective by this research project has been to create a Design for Usability in handling situations (DFU) approach, which is feasible for larger organisations like Danfoss'. It has been a main hypothesis that, by combining theory areas within human-computer interaction (hci)-research with machine design theory and theories of product development, new insights into handling situations, and concepts and methods for DFU, can be created.
Appropriate hci approaches, mainly the human activity approach, and a theory on human activity (the human activity theory) have been investigated and described. Based on the human activity theory, and empirical results, four characteristics of handling have been pointed out and discussed. Here-by new concepts and a new understanding of use is introduced to the mechanical design science community. Usability has been defined and a list of relevant usability principles, based on hci theories, have been outlined.
To meet the main objective a general DFU approach has been created on grounds of the Integrated Product Development framework, hci approaches, and empirical results in two product development projects,

Resume
Produkter fra Danfoss benyttes i forbindelse med både 'software-relateret brug' og 'håndtering af produkters mekaniske aspekter'. Håndtering betragtes generelt som en mere simpel form for brug end software relateret brug. Men brugbarheds-problemer opleves i dag, med Danfoss-produkter -også i håndterings-situationer. I en designproces tages der ikke automatisk højde for brugbarhed i håndterings-situationer; der eksisterer et behov for vćrktøjer til dette formål.
Hovedmålet med dette forskningsprojekt har vćret at formulere en fremgangsmåde for 'Brugsrigtig Konstruktion' (med fokus på fysisk håndtering af produkter), der er realistisk at følge i større organisationer som Danfoss. Det har vćret en hovedhypotese for dette forskningsprojekt, at der, ved at kombinere teoriområder indenfor human-computer interaction (hci) med maskin-konstruktionsteori og teorier for produktudvikling, kan skabes nye insigter for handterings-situationer, og begreber og metoder for Brugsrigtig Konstruktion.
Velegnede hci-fremgangsmåder, primćrt 'the human activity approach', og en teori om menneskelig aktivitet (virksomhedsteorien) er undersøgt og beskrevet. På grundlag af virksomhedsteorien, og empiriske resultater, er fire karakteristika for håndtering udpeget og diskuteret. Herved er nye begreber og en ny forståelse af brug introduceret til maskinkonstruktions-miljøet. Brugbarhed er defineret og en liste over relevante brugbarheds-principper, baseret på hci-teorier, er opstillet.
For at imødekomme hovedmålet har jeg formuleret en generel fremgangsmåde for Brugsrigtig Konstruktion. Det er gjort på basis at rammevćrket for Integreret Produktudvikling, hci fremgangsmåder, og empiriske resultater i to produktudviklingsprojekter.

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