Ergonomics aims to design appliances, technical systems and tasks in such a way as to improve human safety, health, comfort and performance. It developed into a recognized field during the Second World War, when for the first time, technology and the human sciences were systematically applied in a coordinated manner. Physiologists, psychologists, anthropologists, medical doctors, work scientists and engineers, together addressed the problems arising from the operation of complex military equipment.
Because of the 'applied' nature of ergonomics there are many outstanding pieces of work that have never been published in the archival literature, since they were written for contract work by commercial or governmental laboratories. These volumes collect some of those papers that have attained classical status, yet are naturally difficult to obtain, making Ergonomics: Major Writings a unique and valuable collection.
Volume 1 begins with papers setting the historical context of ergonomics, and also includes several classical papers that indicte the scope and range of the disciple. It also examines methodological issues, subjective scales and their uses and task analysis.
Volume 2 looks at skilled behaviour, displays and workload.
Volume 3 examines psychological mechanism and models.
Volume 4 deals with all facets of the engineering branch of ergonomics including; control theory, press control and manufacturing, and automation.