Formally Justifying User-Centred Design Rules: A Case Study on Post-completion Errors

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Interactive systems combine a human operator with a computer. Either may be a source of error. The verification processes used must ensure both the correctness of the computer component, and also minimize the risk of human error. Human-centred design aims to do this by designing systems in a way that make allowance for human frailty. One approach to such design is to adhere to design rules. Design rules, however, are often ad hoc. We examine how a formal cognitive model, encapsulating results from the cognitive sciences, can be used to justify such design rules in a way that integrates their use with existing formal hardware verification techniques. We consider here the verification of a design rule intended to prevent a commonly occurring class of human error know as the post-completion error.