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SBW Feedback: Design of feedback system for increased usability in monostable SBW shifters
Luleå University of Technology, Department of Business Administration, Technology and Social Sciences.
2017 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (professional degree), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Electromechanical shift-by-wire car transmission systems make way for new innovative shifter designs such as monostable shifters that spring back to a starting position after a gear has been chosen. Unfortunately the radical change in the communication between the user and shifter has resulted in accidents due to incorrect gear selection. The inadequate usability of the monostable shifters can be attributed to the feedback it provided to users.

 

The aim of the thesis project was to develop a feedback concept that would improve the usability of a monostable shifter and to study if auditory feedback could be introduced to vehicle systems. By implementing design theory, benchmarking and various creativity methods five concepts with feedbacks in different modalities were developed. The concepts were evaluated in a usability study that involved 25 test participants. A review of the observations from the usability study along with an analysis of the interviews and collected data resulted in the final VRA concept. VRA was a multimodal concept with permanent visual feedback and optional auditory feedback. The shifting pattern was shown on the instrument cluster where the active gear was highlighted through light intensity, color and shape contrasts. The solid blue block, within which the abbreviation for the active gear was displayed, could be seen in the peripheral view. It was perceived as calm and helped the users navigate the shifter. A female machine voice that had a Swedish pronunciation was chosen as the auditory feedback to accompany the “P”, “R” and “D” gear selections. None of the users were indifferent towards the auditory feedback, some perceived it as caring while others found it annoying. Since the analysis did not indicate that auditory feedback was crucial, the VRA concept included an option to turn on or off the sound.

 

Monostable shifters behave differently compared to traditional polystable shifters, therefore with the changes in the physical movement the communication must also be reviewed. It is recommended to include the shifting pattern on the instrument cluster together with monostable shifters, as it makes up for the loss of the visual and haptic information from the physical shifter. Although the usability study showed that auditory feedback was not necessary, improvements were observed among people who favored it. The auditory information would most likely be better received if earcons were implemented instead of speech. 

Abstract [sv]

Elektromekaniska shift-by-wire växlingssystem tillåter nya innovativa designlösningar så som monostabila växelväljare som fjädrar tillbaka till en ursprungsposition efter varje växelval. Dessvärre har den drastiska förändringen i kommunikationen mellan användarna och systemet resulterat i missförstånd och olyckor till följd av fel växelval. Den bristfälliga användbarheten av monostabila växelväljare kan härledas till feedbacken mellan förarens handling och resultat.

 

Syftet med examensarbetet var att utveckla feedbackkoncept som förbättrade användbarheten av en monostabil växelväljare samt att studera om auditiv feedback kunde introduceras i förarsystem. Genom att implementera kunskaperna inom designteori, observationer från benchmarking samt diverse kreativa metoder kunde fem olika koncept presenteras. Koncepten utvärderades i en användbarhetsstudie med 25 testdeltagare.  En genomgång av observationerna från användbarhetsstudien, intervjusvaren samt dataanalysen resulterade i det slutgiltiga konceptet VRA. VRA var ett multimodalt koncept som innehöll permanent visuell feedback samt valbar auditiv feedback. Växlingsschemat visades på instrumentpanelen där den aktiva växeln markerades med hjälp av kontraster i ljusintensitet, färg och form. Förkortningarna på aktiva växel visades inuti en solid blå rektangel som var synlig i periferin. Färgen uppfattades som lugn och den starka kontrasten hjälpte personerna att navigera växelväljaren. Den auditiva feedbacken var i form av en kvinnlig maskinröst med svenskt uttal som kompletterade ”P”, ”R” och ”D” växellägena. Inga testpersoner var likgiltiga till auditiv information, vissa beskrev den som omtänksam medan andra ansåg att den var irriterande. Eftersom analysen indikerade att auditiv feedback inte var kritisk var den auditiva feedbacken valbar i VRA.

 

Monostabila växelväljare skiljer sig drastiskt från polystabila, därför bör kommunikationen mellan systemet och människan ses över i och med de fysiska förändringarna. Växlingsschemat bör inkluderas i instrumentpanelen i samband med att monostabila växelväljare används. Det kan nämligen kompensera bristen på den visuella och haptiska feedbacken från den fysiska väljaren.  Trots att analysen visade på att auditiv feedbak inte var nödvändig kunde förbättringar observeras bland personer som tyckte om det. Den auditiva informationen skulle mest troligt få ett bättre bemötande om earcons användes istället för tal. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. , p. 53
Keyword [en]
shift-by-wire, usability, shifter, feedback design, industrial design, multimodality
Keyword [sv]
shift-by-wire, användbarhet, växel, återkoppling, teknisk design, multimodalitet
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-62445OAI: oai:DiVA.org:ltu-62445DiVA, id: diva2:1081006
Educational program
Industrial Design Engineering, master's level
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2017-03-22 Created: 2017-03-13 Last updated: 2017-03-22Bibliographically approved

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