Attention to Attention and Its Applications: A Concluding View
The chapters in this book represent the best practices of where applied attention research stands, and point to the challenges to attention researchers to be relevant to human factors and applied psychology in general, and to the human factors of safety in complex systems in particular. This final chapter provides both a critical review and discussion of the topic of attention over the past 100 years. Several cautions and suggestions are offered for the future. First, that researchers become less focused on attentional paradigms and more focused on explaining important attentional phenomena. In the past, paradigms have been studied as an end in and of themselves rather than as a means to understanding important real-world attentional phenomena. Second, that the focus on mean effects has, to date, often precluded the study of extreme responses. Given that errors often arise from unusual or extreme events, it is important that they be more frequently examined during the study of human performance in complex systems. Finally, that computational models become more of a focus in the study of applied attention.
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