Naturalness in Driver-Car Interaction

With technology changing the nature of the driving task, qualitative methods can help designers understand and measure driver-car interaction naturalness. Fifteen drivers were interviewed at length in their own parked cars using ethnographically-inspired questions probing issues of interaction salience, expectation, feelings, desires and meanings. Thematic analysis and content analysis found five distinct components relating to ‘rich physical’ aspects of natural feeling interaction related to richer physical, analogue, tactile styles of interaction and control. Further components relate to humanlike, intelligent, assistive, socially-aware ‘perceived behaviours’ of the car. The advantages and challenges of a naturalness-based approach are discussed and ten cognitive component constructs of driver-car naturalness are proposed.