VDU health hazards

VDU health hazards

VDU heaRh hazards The National Computing Centre is to mount a study which will investigate the selection, installation and use of visual display compu...

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VDU heaRh hazards The National Computing Centre is to mount a study which will investigate the selection, installation and use of visual display computer terminals. The possibility of health hazards from working with visual display computer terminals is currently attracting a great deal of interest. This concern is part of the growing awareness that computer terminals have to meet the needs of matching other equipment. There have been claims and counter claims regarding eye-strain and fatigue, but there is no real evidence to help designers or users of equipment. Apart from the health risks and ease of use, the study will also include an examination of the best methods of communication between man and machine. In collecting relevant information, the NCC is seeking from users case histories of both good and bad experience with visual display equipment. Those interested in providing data for the study should contact Paul Wilson on 061-228 6333. (The National Computing

Centre Limited, Oxford Road, Manchester M1 7ED, UK.)

Fokker buy GINO GINO graphics has been installed on the DEC System 10 computer belonging to Fokker-VFW bv and situated at Schiphol Airport, near Amsterdam. The GINO installation at Fokker can be used with both the FORTRAN and ALGOL compilers and drives 4014 displays and a Benson 111 plotter. Installation was carried out by Applied Graphics Systems of The Hague, who are the CAD Centre's distributors throughout Europe. The software includes the GI NO-F library of subroutines for 3D graphical display and interaction, and the GINOG RAF library of automatic routines for generating graphs, histograms, bar charts and pie charts.

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Fokker are using the system, among other applications, to aid production of flight manuals. The Swedish and Danish Highway Authorities have also installed GINO-F for traffic engineering, highway and bridge design applications. Statens Vagwerk, the Swedish Authority have a Univac 1100/15, 4014 display with Kongsberg and Benson plotters. The Danish Authority, Vejdatalaboratorlet, have a Burroughs 6700 with a 4014 display and Kongsberg 1215 plotter.

EdCAAD research

EdCAAD, Edinburgh Computer Aided Architectural Design unit has researched into computer applications in building and environmental design over the past ten years. A brochure newly available from the unit descibes the resources and aids that have been developed during this period. ('Applied Graphics Systems (Europe) by, Current research and development Banstraat 2, The Hague, Nether~ands. includes I NTRA (interacting regional Tel: 070-60 39 03. Telex: 34011 ) analyses provide information on spatactions between sets of spatial distributions, SSHA Superstructures, a package to help designers formulate and analyse buildings of complex geometry. (The application focuses on stair towers linking clustered stacks of dwellings, and analyses provide information on spatial relationships, construction feasibility and detail building production quantities.) The CAD Centre has developed a system PIM (polyhedron interaction model) for generating facial images built up from comprises programs to create and manipulate representatives of objects as intera number of standard features. It operrelated polyhedra. The user describes ates in a similar fashion to the manual individual polyhedra and the system demethods presently used by the UK police force, but has the advantages that the duces the interrelationships between them. Programs include routines for standard features can be merged into a analysing the face junctions between face, the tonal range can be adjusted and separate polyhedra. PICAX (polyhedron even the shape modified, in a manner input by axonometric projection) proviimpossible by conventional methods. des a convenient method for communiThe system uses a display terminal cating a polyhedral representation of an connected to a computer which has a object to a computer. The method operdatabank of facial features. These featates from a manually prepared axonomures are used to build up a composite etric; once represented within the comface that accords with the description puter, PICAX will display different views of witnesses. of the polyhedral representation, and the Development work was undertaken user may perform manipulations and by the Centre at the request of the analyses. (EdCAAD, University of PSDB (Police Scientific Development Edinburgh, Department of Architecture, Branch). The techniques has now been 20 Chambers Street, Edinburgh EH1 I/Z. fully developed, and is being handed over Tel: 031-667 lOl I Ext 4598) to PSDB for practical testing. PSDB intends to carry out a detailed evaluation of the advantages of the new system over the conventional indentikit system. The long-term hope is that it will prove possible to produce a portable unit that could be plugged into a domestic TV and used by a police officer at the scene of an incident to build up pictures of suspects. ~ComputerAided Design THANKS is a program package consisting Centre, Madingley Road, Cambridge CB3 of three programs developed by Nippon OHB, UK. Tel: 0223 63125. Telex: Kokan over the past four years for anal8142O) ysing 3D structures. Incorporating pre-

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computer-aided design