Journal article

Designing for the home : A comparative study of support aids for central heating systems

  • Sauer, Jürgen Department of Psychology, University of Fribourg, Switzerland
  • Wastell, David G. Nottingham University Business School, UK
  • Schmeink, C. Institute of Psychology, Darmstadt University of Technology, Germany
Published in:
  • Applied Ergonomics. - 2009, vol. 40, p. 165-174
English The study examined the influence of different types of enhanced system support on user performance during the management of a central heating system. A computer-based simulation of a central heating system, called CHESS V2.0, was used to model different interface options, providing different support facilities to the user (e.g., historical, predictive, and instructional displays). Seventy-five participants took part in the study and completed a series of operational scenarios under different support conditions. The simulation environment allowed the collection of performance measures (e.g., energy consumption), information sampling, and system control behaviour. Subjective user evaluations of various aspects of the system were also measured. The results showed performance gains for predictive displays whereas no such benefits were observed for the other display types. The data also revealed that status and predictive displays were valued most highly by users. The implications of the findings for designers of central heating systems are discussed.
Faculté des lettres et des sciences humaines
Département de Psychologie
  • English
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