Operational Console Modernization Tool
Navy SBIR FY2014.1

Sol No.: Navy SBIR FY2014.1
Topic No.: N141-049
Topic Title: Operational Console Modernization Tool
Proposal No.: N141-049-0644
Firm: Harmonia Holdings Group
2020 Kraft Drive, Suite 1000
Blacksburg, Virginia 24060-6491
Contact: Marc Abrams
Phone: (540) 951-5901
Web Site: www.harmonia.com
Abstract: From Harmonia's long experience on human factors, console design, and usability engineering we learned that we could bring about better HSI design if we could utilize a validated model and associated computer-based tool. Our proposed tool, ImpactModeler, fuses the many factors and data sources going into console design, to score usability. Furthermore our model and tool will predict the impact of design changes. We propose development of a model that has a good balance of analytical and predictive powers. The model would be based upon multiple inputs across as many aspects of the system as possible to be both comprehensive and tolerant of missing inputs. The output of the model is scoring of individual aspects of usability plus an aggregate score, along with a measure of the level of certainty for each score. ImpactModeler will apply to evaluation of actual physical consoles, or of virtual worlds representing a proposed console design supporting collaborative engineering and concept of operation exercises.
Benefits: The anticipated result is to significantly improve the usability level and time to achieve good usability for combat and other types of consoles. Higher usability translates to improved crew efficiency and thus the fighting ability of Navy combatants. User productivity is likely to increase because problems like operator fatigue from hours of using a console decline with good usability design. Furthermore the cost to the Navy and other agencies of console design will decrease because good design up front avoids costly redesign and installation of hardware in the Fleet to correct usability problems.