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UMIS® Ultra-Micro Indentation System

Introduction to the project The CSIRO UMIS instrument measures mechanical properties of thin films and small volumes of material using an indentation technique. The CSIRO Ultra Micro Indentation System was released in 1984. Since then there have been 3

generations of software (the latest being WinUMIS 2.0). The need had arisen for the next generation of software, incorporating greater usability allowing a wider range of personnel to use it, and thus to expand the market. There

was further need for improved flexibility allowing it to be altered for use in other products while still maintaining the accuracy and reliability of the existing system.

Figure 1 (top): Redesigned CD label for the UMIS software

The Role Industrial Design has Played within the Project

Figure 2 (below). Before redesign of software: 13 active screens

Industrial design has significantly improved the human interface of UMIS and has improved functionality and usability of the product. The roles of Industrial Design has been vital and can be summarised under the following headings. Software/Hardware Analysis The process of software/hardware interaction (ie: establish the role of the software in relation to both the hardware and the user) was analyzed. The use of the machine was studied and depicted using flow charts of operating procedures World’s Best Practice theories were utilised to develop quick concepts of interface styles for evaluation of flexibility and usability

Results A fully functional software interface was produced (see figure 3) Graphic was designed for User Manual and CD label CSIRO corporate branding was integrated into software and a user manual cover design was developed to improve corporate identity and more effectively link it to packaging/software, etc) A working evaluation version of the interface using Flash 5.0 was created to prove usability and flexibility in close cooperation with developers. Functionality and usability was enhanced by decreasing the number of interactive screens for system operation from 13 (Figure 2) to 5.

Figure 3. The redesigned human interface improving the usability of the software by reduction from 13 (above) to 5 active screens.

For further information about UMIS® contact

Industrial Design by

Dr. A.C. Fischer-Cripps

Graeme Szynal

+61 2 9413 7544

0407 929 124