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Human Factors In Design - Assignment Example

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The term human factor is used in many fields of study because of the human involvement in these factors. However the general meaning of human factor is the study of all aspects of human behaviour and how they relate to the surrounding world. This study is aimed at improving performance in operations and safety…
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Human Factors In Design

Download file to see previous pages... For example, before one designs, he/she should consider the capabilities and limitations of those that you are designing for. As these considerations are made, one assumption is usually used and that is: that all users share common capabilities. However, it is important to note the fact that there are other individuals with differences which need not be ignored during design. Some of the human factors considered in design include: perception, memory, response time, handedness (left or right), attention, cognition, movement etc. All these are considered before design to ensure that the end product is workable and performs according to plan. This paper seeks to highlight the influence of human memory in the interface design (Carey, 1996: pp.28-32). What aspects of human memory are considered before the interface design How do these considerations increase the quality of interface design These and many more questions shall be answered in this paper.
Interface design has often been defined as the enabling of client customer or visitor to interact with a product especially a piece of software. Interface design is sometimes referred to as the User Interface Design or User Interface Engineering which refers to the design of a computers, websites, mobile communication devices, software applications, machines, etc with main focus being on the experience of the user and interaction. The main goal of User Interface design, besides the use of graphics to make products attractive, is to ensure a simple and effective interaction between the user and the product so as the user's objectives, aspirations and expectations are met. For example, the use of bold and highly visible graphics in user interfaces ensures that the work represented by the graphic is accomplished more than one paying unnecessary attention to the graphic itself. In this case, the design pays attention to the human factor called visual cognition or generally, visibility and it takes care of human difference such as short sightedness and this explains the boldness to ensure that those with visual problems are able to see the icon or graphic. However memory can also be used in User interface design as will be seen in the later sections of this paper. Therefore, in User Interface, the mouse, keyboard and the menus of a computer system, makes it easier for the user to communicate with the operating system so as the user can achieve a specific goal e.g. in communicating with the operating system the user is able t/o carry out a given task (Thimbleby, 1990: pp.4-12).It should be noted that user interface design is not limited to computers only. In fact, interface design ranges from computer systems, commercial planes, machines, cars etc.

The human memory is rather the part of human beings that has baffled many. Many wonder how it works but the most important part is that the human memory is more of an information processing system. There are three types of human memory: the sensory memory, the short term memory (STM) and the Long term memory (LTM) (Norman, 1982: pp.176-182). To understand the influence of human memory in the interface design process, it is important to understand how the human memory works. The working of the three types of human memory and their interactions is captured in the diagram below:

Source: http://www.cc.gatech.edu/classes/cs6751_97_winter/Topics/human-cap/memory.html

The sensory memory buffers the Sense-received stimuli and there is a sensory ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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