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Red Alert: a cognitive countermeasure to mitigate attentional tunneling

Abstract : Attentional tunneling, that is the inability to detect unexpected changes in the environment, has been shown to have critical consequences in air traffic control. The motivation of this study was to assess the design of a cognitive countermeasure dedicated to mitigate such failure of attention. The Red Alert cognitive countermeasure relies on a brief orange-red flash (300 ms) that masks the entire screen with a 15% opacity. Twenty-two air traffic controllers faced two demanding scenarios, with or without the cognitive countermeasure. The volunteers were not told about the Red Alert so as to assess the intuitiveness of the design without prior knowledge. Behavioral results indicated that the cognitive countermeasure reduced reaction time and improved the detection of the notification when compared to the classical operational design. Further analyses showed this effect was even stronger for half of our participants (91.7% detection rate) who intuitively understood the purpose of this design.
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Submitted on : Friday, June 26, 2020 - 1:33:58 PM
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Julie Saint-Lot, Jean-Paul Imbert, Frédéric Dehais. Red Alert: a cognitive countermeasure to mitigate attentional tunneling. CHI '20 - 38th SIGCHI conference on Human Factors in computing systems, Apr 2020, Honolulu, Hawaï, United States. pp.1-6, ⟨10.1145/3313831.3376709⟩. ⟨hal-02882108⟩



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