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Effects of four types of non-obtrusive feedback on computer behaviour, task performance and comfort

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Author: Korte, E.M. de · Huysmans, M.A. · Jong, A.M. de · Ven, J.G.M. van de · Ruijsendaal, M.
Source:Applied Ergonomics, 2, 43, 344-353
Identifier: 442917
Keywords: Workplace · Behaviour · Comfort · Feedback · Human computer interaction · Task performance · Usability · Behaviour · Comfort · Human-computer · Task performance · Usability · Office buildings · Human computer interaction · adult · article · behavior · computer system · controlled study · female · human · human computer interaction · information processing · male · office worker · signal processing · tactile feedback · task performance · visual feedback · work capacity · Information Society · Organisation · SP - Sustainable Productivity · BSS - Behavioural and Societal Sciences


This study investigated the effects of non-obtrusive feedback on continuous lifted hand/finger behaviour, task performance and comfort. In an experiment with 24 participants the effects of two visual and two tactile feedback signals were compared to a no-feedback condition in a computer task. Results from the objective measures showed that all types of feedback were equally effective to reduce lifted hand/finger behaviour (effectiveness) compared to absence of feedback, while task performance was not affected (efficiency). In contrast to objective measures, subjective user experience was significantly different for the four types of feedback signals. Continuous tactile feedback appeared to be the best signal; not only the effectiveness and efficiency were rated reasonable, it also scored best on perceived match between signal and required action. This study shows the importance of including user experiences when investigating usability of feedback signals. Non-obtrusive feedback embedded in products and environments may successfully be used to support office workers to adopt healthy, productive and comfortable working behaviour. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd and The Ergonomics Society.