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Effects of notebook computer configuration and task on user biomechanics, productivity, and comfort.
Sommerich CM; Starr H; Smith CA; Shivers C
Int J Ind Ergon 2002 Jul; 30(1):7-31
This study took a comprehensive approach to evaluating effects of using a notebook computer stand-alone or along with inexpensive peripheral input devices. The study examined effects on biomechanics, productivity, and discomfort, and considered the impact of both computer configuration and task performed. It was hypothesized that, in general, the stand-alone configuration would induce greater postural fixity and more non-neutral postures than configurations with peripheral input devices. Dependent measures included muscle activity, posture and posture variation/fixity, productivity, and subjective assessments of discomfort and preference. The data were generally consistent with the hypothesis, though some biomechanical advantages were identified for each configuration; specifics and exceptions are discussed, along with reasons for a general recommendation for the use of an external mouse, or mouse and keyboard (without number pad) when using a notebook computer for an extended period of time, as in a desktop replacement scenario.
Muscular-disorders; Musculoskeletal-system; Computers; Computer-equipment; Work-areas; Work-operations; Ergonomics; Humans; Musculoskeletal-system-disorders; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Cumulative-trauma-disorders; Author Keywords: Portable computer; Laptop computer; Notebook computer; Ergonomics; Biomechanics; Pointing device
Ergonomics Laboratory, Department of Industrial Engineering, North Carolina State University, Box 7906, Raleigh, NC 27695-7906
Issue of Publication
Research Tools and Approaches: Exposure Assessment Methods
International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics
North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division