Master's thesis (link) together with Billy Astorsson, for Semcon. Collaborative Project with RISE, Volvo Cars & Volvo Group.
Level 2 automation in cars and trucks has been shown to lower the cognitive workload needed to drive. As a result, drivers may become bored and start using their phone or entertainment system, resulting in unsafe situations. A heads-up display (HUD) may provide a safer alternate, because traffic can still be observed in the peripheral view.
This thesis created guidelines for safe and effective use of interactive heads-up displays (HUDs) regarding interaction, design, and ergonomics. 
The research was divided into four categories:
- User research
- HUD research
- Interface development

- HMI Concept
User research was performed through a cultural probe study, which was followed up by a contextmapping session—including co-creation activities with the participants.
This research led to a better understanding of the users, especially regarding triggers for phone use and attitudes towards restrictions. 
To investigate ergonomics and cognition, a test setup with a heads-up display and a driving simulator was built. As a HUD alternative for the NHTSA Occlusion Test, a new type of test ("Blur Test") was devised with alternating sharp and out-of-focus interfaces. This test was shown to be promising for HUD interface development. 
Regular interface and simulated out-of-focus
In addition, a test was created to evaluate the effects of positioning the HUD interface relative to the road. A position between 2.5° and 5° below the horizon was found to be most suitable for HUD interaction while performing driving tests.
In collaboration with UX experts from Semcon, guidelines were set up for more effective navigation in the HUD interface. Different design elements—such as colors, microinteractions and navigation structure—were tested through the Blur Test and gathered in design guidelines. 
An L2 automated HMI concept was built to collect all previous findings and evaluated through the User Experience Questionnaire (Laugwitz et al., 2008). 
( 🔗link to interface prototype—hit spacebar for navigation instructions)
The test yielded a significant positive experience in a convenience sample, and was used to confirm or remove tentative guidelines. 
Although research into interactive HUDs is a very new field, and the research performed in this thesis was in nature very explorative, several recommendations and guidelines could be conjectured. They are presented as the final deliverables, which immediately proved their value in current-running projects at Semcon's customers and ongoing research projects at RISE Viktoria. 
(link to thesis, guidelines on page 81)

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