Number of co-authors:12
Number of publications with 3 favourite co-authors:Steven A. Lavender:3William S. Marras:3Elizabeth B-N. Sanders:1
Carolyn M. Sommerich's 3 most productive colleagues in number of publications:William S. Marras:34Steven A. Lavender:17Gary A. Mirka:9
... there are no simple 'right' answers for most web design questions (at least not for the important ones). What works is good, integrated design that fills a need--carefully thought out, well executed, and tested.
-- Steve Krug, Don't Make Me Think, p. 136
Read the fascinating history of Wearable Computing, told by its father, Steve Mann
Read Steve's chapter !
The Social Design of Technical Systems: Building technologies for communities
by Brian Whitworth and Adnan Ahmad
The Encyclopedia of Human-Computer Interaction, 2nd Ed.
by Mads Soegaard and Rikke Friis Dam
Carolyn M. Sommerich
Publications by Carolyn M. Sommerich (bibliography)
Korkmaz, Sahika Vatan and Sommerich, Carolyn M. (2010): Teaching Healthy Computing Skills to High School Students via Participatory Ergonomics. In: Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 54th Annual Meeting 2010. pp. 672-676.
When today's students graduate from college and start their first job, many have close to twenty years of computer use exposure and some of them also have discomfort associated with this exposure. This discomfort may be due, in part, to a lack of training, from schools or other sources, in healthy computing habits (such as taking breaks, reducing awkward postures and postural fixity, etc.). A long-term goal of this line of research is to improve the health of students. In this study students were introduced to the concept and principles of healthy computing. The specific aim of this study was to recruit a small group of students to learn, in a participatory fashion, about healthy computing and then to assist them to develop means for effectively conveying their knowledge to other students. The objective of this paper is to explain the methodology that was utilized in the study and to provide evidence of its effectiveness.
© All rights reserved Korkmaz and Sommerich and/or HFES
Lavender, Steven A., Sommerich, Carolyn M., Johnson, Monica R. and Radin, Zaid (2010): Developing Ergonomic Interventions to Reduce Musculoskeletal Disorders in Grocery Distribution Centers. In: Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 54th Annual Meeting 2010. pp. 1229-1233.
The purpose of this work was to explore intervention concepts aimed at addressing the workers' needs in grocery distribution centers. Worker interviews indicated that many of the items that they handle are heavy, including cases of meat (up to 80 lbs), juice, water, and detergent. Management and safety personnel who participated in a brainstorming focus group session indicated key ergonomic issues include the weight of the meat cases, extended reaching, and even more specifically, overhead reaching. Intervention ideas discussed during the brainstorming indicated a need for mechanisms that reduce reach distances by keeping product close to the order picking aisle and mechanisms that relieve the physical burden of handling heavy product from their storage slots onto the order-picker's pallet jack.
© All rights reserved Lavender et al. and/or HFES
Cooper, Karen N., Campbell-Kyureghyan, Naira H. and Sommerich, Carolyn M. (2009): Comparative Study of Computer Usage Patterns and Prevalence of Musculoskeletal Symptoms Among College Students. In: Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 53rd Annual Meeting 2009. pp. 615-619.
Recent studies have shown that computer-use-related musculoskeletal discomfort is prevalent in college students. In this paper two studies of college student computer usage, conducted five years apart (2003 and 2008), are compared. The participants in both studies completed online computer usage surveys. Questions included the duration of computer use, at what times they would most likely be using a computer, and at what locations. Some questions were focused on what safe computing practices the student had possibly adopted, such as taking breaks. Both studies indicated that students often assume awkward postures when computing. Students also reported continuously computing, with no breaks, though breaks are recommended by computer ergonomics programs in other sectors. Reported discomfort associated with computer use indicates that students are already experiencing musculoskeletal symptoms. This study can guide in the development, implementation, and evaluation of changes in the equipment and/or training that will reduce the ergonomic risks to students.
© All rights reserved Cooper et al. and/or their publisher
Liu, Di, Sommerich, Carolyn M., Sanders, Elizabeth B-N. and Lavender, Steven A. (2009): Application of a Participatory Methodology for Investigating Personal Fall Arrest System (PFAS) Usage in the Construction Industry. In: Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 53rd Annual Meeting 2009. pp. 925-929.
The participatory workshop is a new concept of design in which developers, end users, and researchers work together to design a product or service. This approach is still in its experimental stage as applied to studying jobs in the construction industry. In the current study, a participatory workshop was conducted to generate ideas for an improved Personal Fall Arrest System (PFAS) design and another workshop was held to generate ideas on fall protection training. In addition to generating ideas about PFAS design and fall protection training, the data collected through the workshop process was used to create three personas that served, at the end of the project, as vehicles for summarizing the research results. The workshop method is more commonly used by designers, but can provide useful information that can complement data from surveys or laboratory investigations conducted by human factors professionals and others interested in user-centered design.
© All rights reserved Liu et al. and/or their publisher
Sommerich, Carolyn M., Marras, William S. and Parnianpour, Mohamad (1995): Activity of Index Finger Muscles during Typing. In: Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 39th Annual Meeting 1995. pp. 620-624.
An electromyographic investigation was conducted of finger and wrist muscle activity during typing. Examination of the data revealed substantial activity of the extrinsic extensor, a muscle which is ignored in many existing biomechanical finger models. This paper describes activity of the extensor muscle during typing, in absolute terms and relative to activity of the extrinsic flexors. Amplitude probability distribution analyses demonstrated that static extensor activity exceeded 5% MVC for all subjects. Two subjects exhibited pronounced patterns of coactivity in the extrinsic extensor and flexor muscles. Biomechanical modeling efforts demonstrated similar force contributions from the extrinsic extensors and flexors. Based on these results, neglect of finger extensor activity would result in underestimation of finger joint loading.
© All rights reserved Sommerich et al. and/or Human Factors Society
Sommerich, Carolyn M. (1994): Carpal Tunnel Pressure during Typing: Effects of Wrist Posture and Typing Speed. In: Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 38th Annual Meeting 1994. pp. 611-615.
With increasing frequency, reports appear in the popular press linking hand and wrist musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) with keyboard work. Excessive ulnar deviation and self-perceived fast typing speed are two of the many risk factors identified through various epidemiological studies of upper extremity MSD symptoms among those working with keyboards. Yet no study has offered quantitative, biomechanical evidence to explain how these factors might contribute to MSD development. A study was designed to examine carpal tunnel pressure (CTP) during typing, and the effect of radial-ulnar wrist posture and typing speed on CTP. Female subjects typed on a commercially-available keyboard which was oriented in standard and in split configurations. In the split arrangement ulnar deviation was eased in all but one wrist. In the split arrangement, all subjects demonstrated a decrease in CTP concomitant with a decrease in ulnar wrist deviation. However, only one subject exhibited CTP which significantly exceeded pressure thresholds identified in the literature. CTP appeared to be subject-specific in nature. Typing speed was found to affect peak CTP in half of the subjects.
© All rights reserved Sommerich and/or Human Factors Society
Mirka, Gary A., Sommerich, Carolyn M. and Marras, William S. (1989): Effects of Fatigue on Muscle Groups under Dynamic Exertions. In: Proceedings of the Human Factors Society 33rd Annual Meeting 1989. pp. 646-650.
The present study was a quantitative investigation into the substitution patterns and other fatigue-related characteristics of the muscles of the upper leg during dynamic activity. Subjects performed fatigue-inducing leg extensions under varied force and velocity conditions. Electromyographic (EMG) data revealed subject dependent muscle substitution patterns that varied as a function of force/velocity combinations. The results also indicate an interaction between leg angle dependent variables and fatigue. Explanations for these effects are discussed.
© All rights reserved Mirka et al. and/or Human Factors Society
Sommerich, Carolyn M. (1989): Activity Patterns of Several Trunk Muscles during an Asymmetric, Non-Isokinetic Lifting Motion. In: Proceedings of the Human Factors Society 33rd Annual Meeting 1989. pp. 667-671.
The purpose of this study was to investigate muscle recruitment patterns for a task routinely performed in industry, under conditions which might be encountered in industry rather than in a controlled laboratory setting. Subjects encountered two asymmetric loading conditions (minimal and substantial) and two trunk motion speed conditions (normal and fast) and performed several repetitions of each condition. Electromyographic (EMG) voltage data pertaining to four pairs of trunk muscles were collected for analysis. Thc timing of certain events in each signal (start, peak, and end times of elevated activity) were determined. From these events, networks were constructed which portrayed average muscle recruitment order results which were found to occur under all loading and velocity conditions encountered by the subjects. Only two event-pairs were found to occur consistently for all subjects. Event-pairs which were related to changes in resistance or only one pair was found to occur for all subjects.
© All rights reserved Sommerich and/or Human Factors Society
Lavender, Steven A., Sommerich, Carolyn M., Sudhakar, L. R. and Marras, William S. (1988): Trunk Muscle Loading in Non-Sagittally Symmetric Postures as a Result of Sudden Unexpected Loading Conditions. In: Proceedings of the Human Factors Society 32nd Annual Meeting 1988. pp. 665-669.
The present study investigated the effect of warning time and magnitude of an external loading on the trunk muscular response to sudden loading conditions while in a non-sagittally symmetric posture. Eleven subjects were asked to catch falling weights of three magnitudes (3, 6, and 9 kg) with four levels of warning time (0, 100, 200, and 400 ms) in an asymmetric posture. For each of the eight muscles sampled with surface electrodes the integrated electromyographic (EMG) signal was interpreted in terms of its peak value, mean value, onset rate, and lead/lag time with reference to the weight drop. Results show monotonic relations between muscle force and levels of warning time, and muscle force and levels of weight. In addition, muscular forces in the left posterior trunk musculature ranged between two and five times greater than the right posterior trunk musculature in response to sudden loading conditions. This experiment demonstrates how sudden asymmetric loading, and specifically sudden loading without adequate warning time may be involved in the development of low back pain.
© All rights reserved Lavender et al. and/or Human Factors Society
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