A Cognitive Analysis of Leveraging LADAR to Support Combat Identification
ABSTRACT: Current LADAR analysis support tools and processes are inherently flawed due to the data-driven approaches that have guided the development of interfaces, automations, and other supports. Analyst cognitive demands, requirements, and preferences have had little influence in the design of these tools. As a result, these so called"decision aids"can often inhibit the decision making process. In Phase II of this effort, we propose to continue our Phase I Cognitive Systems Engineering approach to develop an analyst-centric LADAR analysis support tool, leveraging the nascent Opticks LADAR add-on framework as a starting point. We will extend the cognitive task analysis and simulation interview protocols developed and executed in Phase 1 to fully describe and detail the decision points, cues and strategies, performance barriers, and current/future benefits associated with LADAR data analysis, leveraging a range of operational LADAR PED cell analysts and likely future NASIC users. Our end product will promote efficient and effective analysis by: leveraging automation only where the analyst will need and accept it (e.g., improved line of sight analysis, automated colorization range enhancements, product support development); developing cognitively-based user interfaces; and implementing the Visual Checklist tool, which will describe the critical decision points in the analysis process. BENEFIT: Analyst-centric LADAR PED decision support tools will greatly enhance the ability of analysts to provide more effective and customized products to their customers. Military benefactors of such tools (and the research we will conduct to derive them) include operational PED cells in Afghanistan and elsewhere as well as NASIC analysts and the Air Force LADAR R & D community. Multiple entities within the Department of Homeland Security would also benefit greatly from cognitively-based LADAR analysis support, whether they are managing borders or disasters.
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