Ergonomics Integration and User Diversity in Product

Abstract: Concideration of products' ergonomic qualitys is one important component for  successful product developement. Product designers engaged in the core activity of product developement need methods that support the consideration of ergonomics along with other product requirements. this thesis aims to adress these needs. The first part of the thesis investigates how people working within product developement organisations communicate with and about users of their products. The general need for methods to support communication of user aspects in product development is indentified trough formal interviews whith product developers and a review of the management, ergonomics and design litterature. The second part of the thesis studies the factors wich affect th integration of ergonomics in product design. Supportive methods, including User Characters, for evoking user concideration among designers together with Overlapping methods fos scheduling ergonomics evaluation in product design processes are introduced and argued. The third part of the thesis reviews an discusses computer aided ergonomics as a mens for integration of ergonomics in product design. A web-based support system for effective employment of human  simulation tools is developed using a participativa approach and evaluated based on the system's usability. The objective of the fourt part of the thesis is to study how human simulation tool can aid designers' consideration of human diversity  to accomodate users of diverse anthropometric characteristics in multivariate design problems such as automobile cockpits. The work involves the evaluation off different approaches for th egeneration of specific manikin families wich can be used as test groups for fitting trials in the virtual design process. The research demonstrates enchantments in design methodology knowledge to support integration of ergonomics in design product processes with a focus on anthopometric diversity in vehicledesign.

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