From Rigid to Flexible – From Virtual to Tangible an Evolution of Human-Centered Design

  • Guy André BoyEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 824)


Human Centered Design (HCD) has become a necessary and unavoidable approach to seriously consider human factors upstream in systems architecture and functionalities. 20th century practices started by inventing and building tangible objects, functionalities being added incrementally and piled up at infinity, offering not only more automated systems but also more complex uses of these systems. Conversely, since the beginning of the 21st century engineering projects are designed from a computer (i.e., in a virtual environment) by defining scenarios and functional configurations that can be tested using human-in-the-loop simulations where the issue of tangibility is becoming crucial along three dimensions: technology, organizations and people (jobs). These virtual structures and functions must be made tangible from two points of view: that of physics and that of the figurative (i.e., cognitive and socio-cognitive). Tangibility can be characterized and evaluated through five dimensions: complexity; maturity; flexibility; stability; and sustainability. It is interesting to note that these dimensions can be mirrored with that of autonomy: inter-connectivity, independence, flexibility, resilience, and persistence. In this perspective, this article presents a new paradigm, the Human-Systems Integration (HSI) and analyzes the evolution of rigid automation towards a flexible autonomy, proposing a new paradigm of HCD.


Human-Centered Design Flexibility Tangibility 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Air and Space AcademyToulouseFrance
  2. 2.ESTIA, Technopole IzarbelBidartFrance

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