Human Systems Integration (HSI); Human Proportions; Human Factors; Man Machine Interface (MMI); Human Computer Interaction (HCI)

“Proportions of Man”, the first reference

to the Man Machine Interface (MMI) circa 1487.

              A drawing created by Leonardo da Vinci. It is accompanied by notes based on the work of the architect Vitruvius. The drawing, which is in pen and ink on paper, depicts a male figure in two superimposed positions with his arms and legs apart and simultaneously inscribed in a circle and square.

             The drawing is based on the correlations of ideal human proportions with geometry described by the ancient Roman architect Vitruvius in Book III of his treatise De Architectura. Vitruvius described the human figure as being the principal source of proportion among the Classical orders of architecture. Vitruvius determined that the ideal body should be eight heads high. Leonardo's drawing is traditionally named in honor of the architect.
             For five hundred years Leonardo's drawing to left  has stood for the basic interface of man within machines. The dawn of the information age pushed that interface into the computer realm and new definitions were created for a more complete representation of the science.
            The beginning of The Cold War led to a major expansion of Defense supported research laboratories working on Human Factors and Man Machine Interface. Also, many of the Human Factors labs that were established during WWII started expanding. Most of the research following the war was military-sponsored. Large sums of money were granted to universities to conduct Man Machine Interface research. The scope of the research broadened from small equipment to entire workstations and systems. Concurrently, a lot of opportunities started opening up in the civilian industry. The focus shifted from research to participation through advice to engineers in the design of equipment. After 1965, the period saw a maturation of the discipline. The field has expanded with the development of the computer and computer applications with humans in the loop. The dawn of the Information Age resulted in the related field of Human–Computer Interaction (HCI), Microsoft Windows and Apple Look and Feel. Likewise, the growing demand for and competition among consumer goods and electronics has resulted in more companies including human factors in product design.

Human–Computer Interaction (HCI) involves the study, planning, and design of the interaction between people (users) and computers. It is often regarded as the intersection of computer science, behavioral sciences, design and several other fields of study.

The terms first known use of HCI was in 1975. The term connotes that, unlike other tools with only limited uses (such as a hammer, useful for driving nails, but not much else), a computer has many affordances for use and this takes place in an open-ended dialog between the user and the computer. A new look and feel of the computer interface was invented by Apple Computer and brought into massive use by Microsoft Windows in IBM Personal Computers.

Because Human–Computer Interaction studies a human and a machine in conjunction, it draws from supporting knowledge on both the machine and the human side. On the machine side, techniques in computer graphics, operating systems, programming languages, and development environments are relevant. On the human side, communication theory, graphic and industrial design disciplines, linguistics, social sciences, cognitive psychology, and human factors such as computer user satisfaction are relevant. Engineering and design methods are also relevant. Due to the multidisciplinary nature of HCI, people with different backgrounds contribute to its success.

The total sum of all these factors is the HSI of the Human’s total immersion within

themselves, their ecosystem, and the environment.


The “Human Systems Integration (HSI) Concept grew out of Human Proportions, Human Factors, Man Machine Interface (MMI), Human Computer Interaction (HCI), and all the rest of the terms coined in circa 1980 that tried to encompass all of the factors that lead to total “immersion” of the Human within the loop of Command and Control Systems. “Man” or “Human” has always been at the center of the concept. As computers grew more powerful they went from “Machine” to “Computer”. Then in 1970-1986 “Computers became highly networked and became Systems. Finally, “Interaction” became Integration in 1986 as a means for human immersion within the system. Integration includes the Ecosystem and the Environment with the human’s five senses in the center and the additional sense, “thinking” as an integration factor.

In circa 2005 the commercial industry (mostly Apple Computer) gave up display size (seeing) for miniaturization (hand held)  of the computer. This was predicted during the 1960's. Eyeglass virtual displays in combination with earphones (hear) and microphone (talk) solves the overall computer-display problem this new age of commercial industry products have created for the optimum HSI users.

VGE Foundation has company private information that solves the HSI dilemma. Contact for more information.