Automation Technology and Human Performance: Current Research and Trends

By Mark W. Scerbo | Go to book overview
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Remembering control functions coupled with the motor demands of locomotion in a virtual environment made the doorways tasks complex enough to see initial performance differences.

For the doorway task, although it appears that experience with computers may have been a major contributing factor determining performance. However, it was demonstrated that older adults were indeed capable of learning how to use a joystick for locomotion and navigation in VE, thus indicating sufficient cognitive and motor skills. Czaja ( 1988) suggests that research regarding response latency and older adults implies that the design of displays, as well as response devices, and user software are critical for the effective implementation of computer systems. Studies using computer or video game experience as a covariate in future research might allow for researcher to isolate some of these other factors potentially contributing to performance differences. Therefore, further studies must be conducted to address the issues touched upon in this paper, as well as issues regarding older adults' susceptibility to simulator or Cyber sickness.


We would like to thank Bruce Knerr and the U.S. Army Research Institute Simulator Systems Research Unit (ARI SSRU), Orlando Field Unit for all their support. We would also like to show our appreciation to the Institute for Simulation and Training (IST) at the University of Central Florida (UCF), especially Kimberly Parsons, Dwayne Nelson, and Greg Wiatrowski for all their technical support. We would also thank the Learning Institute for Elders (LIFE) at UCF and the individuals that participated in this study.


Czaja S. J. ( 1988). Microcomputers and the Elderly. In M. Helander (Ed.), Handbook of Human-Computer Interaction, North-Holland: Elsevier Science Publishers B. V., 543-568.

Ehrlich J. A., Knerr B. W., Lampton D. R. and McDonald D. P. ( 1997). Team situational awareness training in virtual environments: Potential capabilities and research issues. (Technical Report), US Army Research Institute for the Behavioral and Social Sciences: Alexandria, VA.

Hays R. T. and Singer M. J. ( 1989). Simulation Fidelity as an Organizing Concept. In R. T. Hays and M. J. Singer (Eds.), Simulation Fidelity in Training System Design: Bridging the Gap Between Reality and Training. (pp 47-67), New York: Springer-Verlag.

Harbin T. J., ( 1991). Environmental toxicology and the aging visual system. In D. Armstrong, M. F. Marmor , and J. M. Ordy (Eds.), The effects of aging and environment on vision, 219-224. New York: Plenum Press.

Hughes P. C. ( 1981). "Lighting for the Elderly: A psychobiological approach to lighting". Human Factors, 23( 1), 65-85.

Kennedy R. S., Lane N. E., Lilientahl K. S., Berbaum K. S., and Hettinger L. J. ( 1992) "Profile analysis of simulator sickness symptoms: Application to virtual environment systems". Presence: Teleoperators and Virtual Environments, 1( 3), 295-301.

Lampton D. R., Knerr B. W., Goldberg S. L., Bliss J. P., Moshell J. M., & Blau B. S. ( 1994). "The virtual environment performance assessment battery (VEPAB)". Presence, 3 + ̲( 2), 145-157.

Lampton D. R., Gildea J. P., McDonald D. P. and Kolasinski E. M. ( Oct. 1996). Effects of display type on performance in virtual environments. (Technical Report 1049), US Army Research Institute for the Behavioral and Social Sciences: Alexandria, VA.

Leibowitz H. W. and Owens D. A. ( 1977). "Nighttime Driving Accidents and Selective Degradation". Science 197, pp 422-423.

Levinson W. H., and Pew R. W. ( 1993). Use of virtual environment training technology for individual combat simulation. (Technical Report 971). US Army Research Institute for the Behavioral and


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