Human-Machine Interface: Information Management for Future Commercial Vehicles
Published June 28, 2001 by Verlag Des Verein Deutscher Ingenieure GmbH in Germany
The driver's cab is the communication interface between the driver and the functions to be operated within the vehicle (HMI - Human-Machine-Interface). In cabs up until now the ergonomic specifications in terms of layout and design have essentially been taken into account. Instruments, displays and setting elements were, depending upon priority, allocated to primary or secondary areas.
The number of display and setting functions is continuously on the increase in modern vehicles. New convenience systems, communication and telematics services as well as internet access drive this development on. The resulting flood of information - ""information overkill"" - and the necessary responses from the driver to this flood may lead to a driver suffering a dangerous diversion and mental stress.
The demand that a driver's attention should not be diverted from the traffic situation nor the task of driving the vehicle and that the hands, insofar as possible, remain on the steering wheel, is made possible by these new solutions. Technical innovations, such as the use of bus-oriented connection technologies (CAN bus) through to integrated systems provide a major contribution in taking the strain off the driver.
With regard to the ergonomic development of future information systems and their ""HMI treatment,"" essential subordinate factors have to be taken into consideration: Instrumentation: -Number and type of function and information and -Display application, central display in instrument cluster, secondary display (Selection of information); - Menu design: - Definition of user structure, -Vehicle signaling information and dialog menu; -Content and priorities, restrictions, ""open"" systems, and -Display graduation and graphic surface; -Input elements: -Type, configuration and function, -Hard keys, soft keys, -Spatial layout and actuation, and -Ergonomic assessment.
The integral and unfailing consideration of such aspects leads to traffic-safety solutions, which serve to relieve the driver and support him/her in his/her task.