These research topics are of current interest to OERC during 2013 and are presented in no particular order
Please refer to the guidelines for preparing and submitting a proposal, which can be found here.
Keywords in bold italic are of special interest
1. Input Technologies
- What are the productivity, preference, biomechanical, perceived comfort, and usability effects of direct, indirect and near-field gesture interactions?
- What are the productivity, preference, biomechanical, perceived comfort, and usability effects of multimodal interactions (e.g., gesture, voice, gaze, traditional pointing, etc.)?
- We would like to support the development and validation of standardized tools for the objective cross-platform assessment of direct, indirect, and near-field gesture interactions.
- For usage modeling in the context of devices or work scenarios (e.g., laptop with touchscreen and gesture-enabled trackpad, dual mousing) that allow for or require the use of multiple input technologies; what is the effect on productivity, preference, biomechanics, perceived comfort, and usability?
2. Hardware Platforms & Accessories
- What are the usage patterns, productivity, biomechanics, perceived comfort, preference and usability effects associated with the use of new computing form factors (e.g., slates/tablets, convertible notebooks, hybrids, All-in-Ones, smartphones, etc.) and how do these form factors integrate into the worker’s ecosystem?
- How do work tasks and computing platforms integrate to provide optimal worker productivity and ergonomics (i.e., which computing tool for which task)?
- What advice/design changes/accessories can be used to reduce risk associated with the use of new computing platforms?
- What are the effects of accessories (e.g., stands, cases, docking stations, low travel and/or compact keyboards) designed for mobile computing platforms on worker productivity, biomechanics, preference, comfort, and usability and how should they fit within the work environment?
3. Software User Interface Design
- What are the design elements, including customization features, which optimize user performance and ergonomics?
- What are the necessary tools to assess the ergonomic impact of software UI?
- What are the UI design requirements necessary for optimizing software for productivity and ergonomics with direct and indirect touch interaction?
4. Output Technologies
- What are the subjective and objective biomechanical, visual comfort, performance and productivity effects of high pixel density, display size, and the simultaneous use of multiple displays?
5. Work Environments/Scenarios
- How has the introduction of new technologies influenced the physical environment?
What are the ergonomic considerations/implications with regard to productivity, safety and comfort for:
- Mobile workers (home, plane, vehicle, hotels)
- Unassigned workspaces (hoteling, touchdown stations, common areas, etc.)
- Home office environments
- Needs of multigenerational populations
- Distributed work settings, including individual, group and social settings
- Various work styles and work patterns (ergonomics of sit stand, location of work?
What are the impacts of lighting
- Source, illuminance levels, luminance levels, luminance balance, color (frequency), and color temperature on performance, productivity and comfort on computer users?
- Direct and indirect glare effects on computer user performance, productivity and comfort.
6. Mobile Devices and Accessories
- What are the usage patterns, productivity, biomechanics, perceived comfort, preference, and/or usability associated with multiple mobile devices (slates, tablets, notebooks/laptops, handhelds, smart phones), and/or mobile device accessories?
- Are there issues of risk unique to mobile devices? What might be done to mitigate them?
- What are the injury and symptom rates associated with mobile device use and are they distinct from those associated with fixed or desktop devices?
- What advice / design changes / accessories can be used to reduce risk associated with mobile device use?
- What are the effects of reduced/modified key pitch, key force displacement, key travel and keyboard layout on user biomechanics, productivity, preference, comfort, and usability?
7. Software User Interface (UI) Design
- What are the design elements that optimize the ergonomics of the UI to maximize comfort and productivity and minimize fatigue, discomfort and time-on-task (e.g. reducing # of clicks, drags)?
- What is the impact of UI design on user comfort and ergonomics?
- Are there new tools to analyze the ergonomic impact (e.g., visual and biomechanical loads) of software user interface designs?
- How can we understand what customization features are needed (should be standardized) to enable a user to minimize visual and biomechanical loading, e.g., easy to access/use zoom feature?
- What is the impact of UI design on user comfort and ergonomics?
8. Collaborative Environments and Technologies
- What are the ergonomic and productivity implications of collaborative work environments (such as bench environments and team room collaborations) where one element of the workspace is shared (such as technology and/or furniture)?
- How can the ergonomics of the work environment affect collaboration with remote users and/or geographically disparate teams, including the impact of technologies such as video conferencing and digital content sharing/co-creation?
- How can the ergonomics of workstation design support in-person collaborative activities (as distinct from physically disparate activities)?
- What are the productivity and comfort effects of acoustic and other environmental properties of collaborative workspaces?
9. Training / Intervention
- In the workplace, what is the impact of instruction/training, practice and other techniques on compliance and behavioral change?
- Which techniques help users to maintain long term behavioral changes?
- How can technology be used to influence cultural/behavioral goals (e.g., break software, ongoing reminders, monitoring, web-based training)?
10. Risk Management And Prevention
- How should the effectiveness\productivity of program interventions be measured?
- How can risk assessment strategies be compared?
- What are the macro ergonomic considerations (e.g., what kinds of interventions are most easily adoptable/deployable)?
- How do wellness, psychosocial factors, individual factors, workstyle and safety culture affect injury prevention?
- Are there generational and experience considerations with regard to risk management and prevention?
- What are the risk outcomes of sedentary work environments/workstyles?
- What is the impact of early life exposure to computer use and its impact on the dose-response relationship later in life? NOTE: Computer is used here in a general sense.