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Contextualized support on a tablet for the transmission of command information – TACTIC

After a analyse phase of scenarios proposed by MASA, the LIP6 and Intuitive World will study in the formalism of Contextual Graphs the way users use the C2. In parallel, the Lab-STICC will develop a gestural grammar and appropriate model of interactions. Then they will combine their results to create a model of touch interface that MASA will implement in a demonstrator stimulated thanks an adaptation of the simulation of SWORD.

The expected results of the project mainly concern the proposal of a new mode of interaction and user interface rendering, as a touch C2 demonstrator Touch stimulated by a simulation.

This project will lay the foundation of a transition from the current C2 basic GUI to an interface using modern technologies and incorporating user behavior to anticipate the sequence of commands and provide intelligent assistance that facilitates the control of complex systems . It will offer innovative use of contextual graphs for easy handling of complex systems by the user and new forms of interaction.

Publications in scientific journals and conferences (national and international) will offer to communicate the results and the work done during the project. Partners participation in scientific conferences (CHI, HCI, ECSI, IJCAI, ECAI, ...) and professional conferences (I / ITSEC, ITEC) will also communicate directly on the project through demonstrations organized in showrooms.

Submission summary

As part of the digitalization of the battlefield, Command & Control (C2) systems are already widespread in the military. These information and communication systems give their user a view of the operational situation, typically with a map overlaid with symbols that represent units. The system gathers information from several sources and lets the user communicate and give orders directly. Such systems are also being used, or on the way to being used, by first responders or large operators in the private sector.

There is a variety of C2 systems, sometimes used together, as in the French Army where several C2’s coexist. Interoperability between C2 systems is therefore a major issue for the efficient flow of information between ranks, services, armies or even countries inside a multi-national coalition.

An interoperability standard between C2 systems, the Battle Management Language (BML), is emerging. It is being adopted by the militaries of France and several countries belonging to NATO. It allows coding messages exchanged between C2 systems in a normalized way. Now, any design and development around C2 systems must support BML.

Military C2 systems that are to be used on the field generally have a tactile interface of small size to address the requirements of mobility and simplicity of use in difficult situations. Up to now, interfaces have been complex to use and require training.

The objective of the TACTIC project is to provide an intelligent interface on a tablet for a C2 system to handle commands that comply with the BML format. This interface will take advantage of all possibilities of gestural touch interfaces (1) to be able to effectively provide the information that applies to a broad spectrum of BML orders, and (2) to develop a cognitive man-machine interface that takes into account the context and history of use to enable actors to manage the complexity of the system.

The partners involved in the TACTIC project are:
- MASA Group, project leader, makes software for military simulation. MASA SWORD, its constructive simulation software, will be used to test the interface that will be developed. MASA Group brings its experience with the Defense sector and developing software.
- The contribution of the Lab-STICC (Human-System and Virtual Environments team) will focus on modeling elements and manual transformation of models, to develop a grammar of easy-to-use touch interactions on small surfaces adapted for a framework of complex use.
- UPMC-LIP6 will bring (1) its experience in the context modeling actors’ behaviors during interaction with an interface and (2) its software "CxG_Platform" to perform the modeling in a uniform representation of the elements of knowledge, reasoning and contexts.
- Intuitive World will use its cognitive approach to human behavior in situations of problem solving during the knowledge acquisition phase and will participate in modeling of human behavior during interactions with the interface.

After a preliminary phase for studying the problem and specification of use cases, UPMC-LIP6 and Intuitive World will model how actors manage BML orders in a formalism representing uniformly elements of knowledge, reasoning and contexts. Then, Lab-STICC will develop a grammar of gestures and an interaction model adapted to BML and tablet touch screens. They will then combine their results to reach a smart touch interface model that explicitly incorporates the notion of context to present to the user the most relevant commands and information. Their results will be implemented in two tools by MASA, a C2 system compatible with BML that will integrate the developed interface, and simulation software with which the C2 will communicate and whose simulated operational situation will evolve depending on the messages coming from the user, as a test and validation tool for the interface.

Project coordinator

Madame Caroline Chopinaud (MASA Group S.A.)

The author of this summary is the project coordinator, who is responsible for the content of this summary. The ANR declines any responsibility as for its contents.

Partner

MASA MASA Group S.A.
LabSTICC Lab-STICC
UPMC-LIP6 Université Pierre et Marie urie (UPMC)
IW Intuitive World

Help of the ANR 280,050 euros
Beginning and duration of the scientific project: January 2013 - 24 Months

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