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Supporting instead of replacing the planner - an intelligent system for factory layout planning

: Kloth, M.; Herrman, J.

Salvendy, G.; Smith, M.J.:
Human-Computer Interaction. Vol.2. Software and Hardware Interfaces. Proceedings. HCI International '93
Amsterdam, 1993 (Advances in Human Factors/Ergonomics 19B)
ISBN: 0-444-89540-X
International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction <5, 1993, Orlando/Fla.>
Fraunhofer IML ()
Expertensystem; facility planning; factory layout planning; human computer interaction; intelligent assistant system; intelligent system; Layoutplanung; Mensch-Rechner-Interaktion; support system; wissensbasiertes System

Increasing requirements of the factory layout planning require for more and more support by computers. However, current software tools for complex real world problems are often organized in the wrong way: They automate the considered task (or parts of it) instead of supporting the problem solving process performed by the expert. In this way a tool provides a more or less sufficient replacement for the user's work, often with limited usefulness. In contrast, intelligent assistant systems are organized in an alternative way and can be integrated into the daily work of the planner without effort. In this paper, a new, interactive approach for software tools supporting real-world design tasks is presented. The intelligent design assistant for factory layout planning provides analysis information about the current and previous design states and can perform single design steps automatically. Explanations about design decisions make these steps transparent to the user. An adaptable user inter face supports the planner's design style. The system has been applied successfully to factory layout planning tasks.