Journal of the Human-Environment System
Online ISSN : 1349-7723
Print ISSN : 1345-1324
ISSN-L : 1345-1324
Volume 11 , Issue 1
Showing 1-10 articles out of 10 articles from the selected issue
Review Articles
  • Ingvar Holmér
    Type: Review Article
    2008 Volume 11 Issue 1 Pages 1-5
    Published: February 01, 2008
    Released: December 30, 2009
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS
    Many people world wide are exposed to cold environments, either artifical as in cold stores and freezing houses, or outdoors. Cold is a hazard to health and may affect performance. Safe and optimal working conditions may be achieved in cold work places by assessing conditions using international standards. ISO 11079 presents a method for evaluation of whole body heat balance as well criteria for assessment of local cooling of for example hand and fingers, bare skin and airways. Additional standards are available describing evaluation strategies, work place observation checklists and checklist for medical screening. Risks associated with contact with cold surfaces can be evaluated with ISO 13732. The strategy and principles for assessment of risks related to cold work are reviewed in this paper.
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  • Mohamed Saat Ismail, Yutaka Tochihara
    Type: Review Article
    2008 Volume 11 Issue 1 Pages 7-12
    Published: February 01, 2008
    Released: December 30, 2009
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS
    Adaptation to heat can be acquired through natural or artificial climatic stimuli. As compared to temperate natives, tropical natives have delayed onset of sweating. The sweat onset time tends to decrease with longer duration of stay in temperate zone and lower sodium concentration in sweat. The local amount of evaporation is significantly lower at the lower part of the sub scapular region associated with of higher mean skin temperature (Tsk) and rectal temperature (Tre) during rest, exercise and recovery period in the heat. The set-point of the core temperature is at a higher level in tropical natives. The heat-activated sweat gland density (HASG) is significantly lower at resting levels, and sweat gland density is lower associated with smaller output per single gland. The reduced amount of evaporation rate and delayed onset of sweating in the tropical natives is due to their higher Tsk, which accelerated dry heat loss with a reduction of the rate of sweating as a result significantly lower in dehydration. Tropic-dwelling subjects, although exposed to prolonged passive heat exposure, are not fully heat acclimatized. To achieve further heat acclimation, they need to gradually expose themselves to exercise-heat stress in a hot environment. This may be important for athletes either from tropical or temperate areas who will participate in events all over the world, in different climatic conditions. Environmental adaptation may be relevant in every event. Athletes should undergo re-acclimatization before competition to reduce the adverse effects of environmental temperature change.
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  • Ken Parsons
    Type: Review Article
    2008 Volume 11 Issue 1 Pages 13-18
    Published: February 01, 2008
    Released: December 30, 2009
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS
    Elderly people often have different environmental requirements for health and safety, comfort and performance than younger people. This is related to the deterioration in sensory, physiological, neural and cognitive systems associated with age. Ideally standards should be inclusive and cover all populations of interest. This is not always possible however and a pragmatic approach is to develop standards that advise on special requirements for elderly people. Responses of elderly people to the visual and lighting, thermal, acoustic and other environments are presented. Reduction in visual acuity and hearing thresholds are obvious effects of age which are well understood. Although systems deteriorate with age, however, people gain experience and learn how to compensate for deterioration by appropriate behaviour. The differences in adaptive opportunity between elderly and younger people should be identified by standards makers when specifying appropriate environments.
    This paper describes the ‘inclusive’ philosophy of standards for human response to the physical environment. It describes ‘accessible design’ and how standards for physical environments occupied by elderly people can contribute to accessible design. The production of standards that include the requirements of elderly people has exposed the data gap between what is required and what is known. If standards are to be truly representative of the whole, global population then data on responses to environments should be collected across all groups of people and not just specialist groups often used by researchers. It is not inevitable that elderly people are handicapped by their environment and appropriate and inclusive standards can contribute to accessible environments for all.
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  • Gil-Soo Jang, Hoon Shin, Min-Jeong Song, Chan Kook
    Type: Review Article
    2008 Volume 11 Issue 1 Pages 19-25
    Published: February 01, 2008
    Released: December 30, 2009
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS
    Several studies on audio-visual interactions have shown that the visual stimulus can influence loudness of traffic noise. And it was shown that the auditory stimulus such as music in the street can reduce the road traffic noise perception. On the base of these results, a series of experimental studies were carried out and reviewed the psychological effect of visual and auditory stimuli on the perception of road traffic noise.
    The first experiment was designed to assess the visual effect of twelve roadsides with different landscapes on the road traffic noise perception. As a result, approx. 3 to 5 dB(A) of psychological reduction was seen in places where natural landscape was preferred, compared to the others, although the noise levels were similar. The second experiment was designed to evaluate the effect of visual screening from adjacent roads on road traffic noise perception by means of ME method in a laboratory. As the result, the effect of psychological reduction was observed at 65 dB(A) or lower. Especially, the barrier which screening optically from adjacent roads led to 5 to 10% of loudness reduction effect, compared to non-screening cases.
    Finally, the third experiment was designed to evaluate the effect of visual and auditory stimuli with ME method and 7-point SD rating scale in a laboratory. And it was found that up to 10% of loudness reduction and about 2 dB(A) of noise perceptional reduction were seen at 65 dB(A) or lower.
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  • Gert ten Hoopen
    Type: Review Article
    2008 Volume 11 Issue 1 Pages 27-35
    Published: February 01, 2008
    Released: December 30, 2009
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS
    In the introduction the importance of illusions is illustrated as being a peephole through which the processes of sensation and perception can be watched. Three illusions will exemplify this, one for the visual modality (the goose orientation illusion), one for the tactile modality (Aristotle's illusion), and one for the auditory modality (streaming illusion). Subsequently, three “classic” time illusions are discussed: 1 - illusion of a divided time interval, 2 - subjective rhythmization, and 3 - the kappa effect. These latter three illusions are dealt with in view of more recent studies.
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  • Stephen R. Lord, Catherine Sherrington, Hylton B. Menz
    Type: Review Article
    2008 Volume 11 Issue 1 Pages 37-42
    Published: February 01, 2008
    Released: December 30, 2009
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS
    Most homes contain environmental hazards and many older people suffer trips and slips inside their homes and immediate surroundings. The interaction between an older person's physical abilities and their exposure to environmental hazards seems crucial to understanding the role of environmental hazards in falls. There may be a non-linear pattern between mobility and falls associated with hazards. Household environmental hazards appear to pose the greatest risk for older people with fair balance, whereas those with poor balance are less exposed to hazards and those with good mobility are more able to withstand them. Reducing hazards in the home has not been shown to be an effective falls prevention strategy in the general older population and those at low risk of falls. However, home hazard reduction is effective if targeted to older people with a history of falls and visual and mobility limitations. The effectiveness may depend on providing complementary mobility training and other strategies for increasing behaviour change.
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  • Steven W. Lockley
    Type: Review Article
    2008 Volume 11 Issue 1 Pages 43-49
    Published: February 01, 2008
    Released: December 30, 2009
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS
    The mammalian eye detects light for a range of behavioral and physiological responses separate and apart from sight. In humans, ocular light exposure resets the endogenous circadian pacemaker, suppresses synthesis of the pineal hormone melatonin, enhances morning cortisol production, increases heart rate and core body temperature, induces pupillary constriction, and improves subjective and objective measures of alertness. Several lines of evidence suggest that these responses are mediated primarily via a novel photoreception system with short-wavelength sensitivity (λmax 460–480 nm) different from that used for sight. In order to compare the relative contribution of the novel photoreceptor system with the three-cone visual photopic system for multiple non-visual effects of light, we compared the responses following exposure to an equal photon density (2.8×1013 photons/cm2/s) either 460 nm (n=8) or 555 nm (n=8) monochromatic light (10 nm half-peak bandwidth) at night on circadian phase resetting, melatonin suppression and subjective and objective correlates of alertness. As compared to 555 nm exposure, 460 nm light caused twice the phase shift in the circadian melatonin rhythm, double the amount of melatonin suppression, and significantly reduced auditory reaction time and lapses of attention. Exposure to 460 nm light also preferentially suppressed delta-theta (0.5–5.5 Hz) activity and elevated high alpha power (9.5–10.5 Hz) in the waking electroencephalogram (EEG) recordings, indicating a more alert state. The short-wavelength sensitivity to the non-visual effects of light indicates that the photopic visual system is not the primary photoreceptor system mediating these responses to light, and is consistent with predominant input from the novel melanopsin-containing photosensitive retinal ganglion cells. These data also suggest that short-wavelength light may be an effective therapy for resetting the circadian system in Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders and could be used as a direct fatigue countermeasure in a range of clinical and occupational settings. Translation of these basic findings into real-world applications is beginning to occur but the challenge to architects and lighting designers is to provide lighting that optimizes both the visual and non-visual effects of light simultaneously and safely.
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  • Peter Howell
    Type: Review Article
    2008 Volume 11 Issue 1 Pages 51-57
    Published: February 01, 2008
    Released: December 30, 2009
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS
    Environments affect speaking and listening performance. This contribution reviews some of the main ways in which all sounds are affected by the environment they propagate into. These influences are used to assess how environments affect speakers and listeners. The article concludes with a brief consideration of factors that designers may wish to take into account to address the effects.
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Original Articles
  • Valter Ciocca, Fong Chung Yan Patricia
    Type: Original Article
    2008 Volume 11 Issue 1 Pages 59-63
    Published: February 01, 2008
    Released: December 30, 2009
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS
    This study investigated the effects of fundamental frequency (F0) separation on children's ability to recognize a target melody (the first six notes of the ‘Happy Birthday’ song) whose notes were interleaved with those of a background (distractor) melody. Children aged four, five, six, nine, ten and young adults participated in the study. Participants heard two pairs of interleaved melodies. One pair contained the correct version of the target melody; in the other pair, the 3rd or 4th notes of the target melody were shifted upwards or downwards by two semitones. Listeners were asked to select which of two pairs of interleaved melodies contained the correct version of the ‘Happy Birthday’ song, after which they received visual feedback about their response. Results showed that greater F0 separation improved performance, and that there was a small but statistically significant trend of increasing performance as age increased.
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  • Kyung-Ran Choi, Jung-Min Choi, Keiichi Sato
    Type: Original Article
    2008 Volume 11 Issue 1 Pages 65-71
    Published: February 01, 2008
    Released: December 30, 2009
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS
    In order to enhance the quality of people's daily life and work through the effective use of pervasive technologies such as network and ubiquitous computing technologies, it is necessary to understand the mechanisms by which people accept and integrate a new product and service into their lives. Since new technologies can deeply pervade daily life, consideration of cognitive and socio-cultural dimensions becomes increasingly important for successful design and deployment of new products. The notion of product acceptance raises questions such as how is the product positioned, how is it integrated in the existing organization of the user's mental and behavioral spaces, how does it generate meanings and values for users, and how does it become a part of the user's cultural construct. This research first examines and proposes a model of new product introduction and product evolution stages in the culture formation cycle. Then the role of user knowledge and learning in the product acceptance process is examined in order to explain the mechanism of user acceptance and develop a structural assessment methodology that effectively incorporates cultural dimensions for design decisions. This methodology is effective also for introducing new concepts to system design such as sustainability and universality as well as for introducing new technologies. As a research information platform, Modular Script Scenario method previously developed by the authors was used for incorporating many different dimensions of socio-cultural aspects of product acceptance.
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