Car Dashboard Typeface Usability

Nifty research (PDF) from MIT’s AgeLab:

This paper reports on the results of a project examining the impact of typeface design on glance behavior away from the roadway when a driver interacts with a multi-line menu display designed to model a text-rich automotive human machine interface (HMI). (…) Across the two studies, among men, a “humanist” typeface resulted in a 10.6% lower visual demand as measured by total glance time as compared to the “square grotesque” typeface. Total response time and number of glances required to complete a response showed similar patterns. Interestingly, the impact of different typeface style was either more modest or not apparent for women on these variables. Error rates for both males and females were 3.1% less for the humanist typeface.

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designed for use cover

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