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Profession of designing machines, tools, and work environments to best accommodate human performance and behaviour. It aims to improve the practicality, efficiency, and safety of a person working with a single machine or device (e.g., using a telephone, driving a car, or operating a computer terminal). Taking the user into consideration has probably always been a part of tool design; for example, the scythe, one of the oldest and most efficient human implements, shows a remarkable degree of ergonomic engineering. Examples of common devices that are poorly designed ergonomically include the snow shovel and the computer or typewriter keyboard.
Variants of ERGONOMICS
ergonomics or human engineering or human factors engineering
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on ergonomics, visit Britannica.com.