Display of Short Text Messages
on Automotive HUDs:
Effects of Workload and Location on Driving

Tsimhoni, O., Watanabe, H., and Green, P.

September, 2000

This report describes the second in a series of studies to identify best locations for presenting various types of information on a head-up display (HUD). In the current study, 16 subjects drove a simulator on roads with curves of several different radii while responding to messages appearing at one of 8 locations on a HUD. Two types of information were presented on the HUD in separate conditions. In the naming condition, subjects indicated the gender (male, female) of a first name shown on the HUD. In the detection condition, garbled names were presented, to which subjects had to respond upon detection. Response time to messages increased with the horizontal eccentricity of the HUD location. The center positions (straight ahead) had mean response times of 1100 ms, whereas the outer positions (10 degrees to either side) had mean response times of 1250 ms. In contrast to reading time, detection time was not significantly affected by where the message appeared. Driving performance was only degraded when the HUD appeared at the center position. The most preferred position was 5 degrees to the right of the center, at eye level. Increasing driving workload significantly increased detection time and as a result increased response time to reading the messages. In agreement with the slower response times, more HUD messages were missed while driving on sharper curves. Overall, the driving performance of older men was less variable than other age-gender groups. However, their responses to HUD messages were slower and they committed more errors.

Graphical Abstract (.pdf) | UMTRI-2000-13 Full Report (.pdf)


Close This Window