Model-Based User Interfaces

 

Monitoring and Controlling control-based systems are essentially important for the error-free work of each plant.

For this reason, the user interfaces should be optimally equipped for each application case, which involves high production costs since a lot of standards and guidelines have to be considered (for example VDI/VDE guideline 3850 in the manufacturing industry or VDI/VDE guideline 3699 in the process industry).

The design of an interface should be planned in cooperation with the future user and developed by personnel with a corresponding degree of experience after it has been approved by the operation.

Despite these efforts, an alteration of the user interface for optimization purposes during its life cycle is quite common. With this in mind, it is very useful to allow these alterations even without a deeper knowledge of the visualization infrastructure.

In this context, we present a concept where the entire user interface including all interactions with the user or process is deposited as a changeable model at runtime.

Since this description was modelled in an abstract manner (and thus, without a restriction to individual technologies like Java or C++), it is additionally possible to generate a future-proof representation. A more detailed description of the technology can be found on our website.

In order that the representation can immediately be used in a broad range of application modes, we have concentrated on web-technologies in our implemented visualization-technology.

  csHMI on tablet Copyright: PLT csHMI on tablet

By combining HTML, SVG and Javascript we have created a realization that provides a uniform basis for a wide range of mobile devices reaching from mobile phones to tablet computers (see Figure). Obviously, it is useful to realize different user interface concepts for the different device classes. The selection of those tailored user interface concepts is, however, not part of our current research direction.