CASkade Automation Study

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Imagine you are taking command of a Arleigh Burke-class destroyer – the USS Lexington. As its captain you are directly responsible for the well-being of both the ship and its crew, and in particular avoiding collisions with other ships in your area of operations.

In this experiment you will be presented with 40 trials. On each trial it is possible a collision could occur between your ship and another cargo ship. As you watch the paths of the ships, if you feel it is possible the two ships will collide, you should PAUSE the scenario and alter the course direction of your ship to avoid the collision. If you do not pause, the path of your ship will not be altered. The movement in each scenario is timed, and will automatically end in 40 seconds.

If you decide to turn, you get one chance to steer your ship. In the controls you can:

In choosing when and where to maneuver, while avoiding a collision is most important, you also need to consider that ideally you want to stay as close to the course to your destination as you safely can. Electing to turn 15 degrees in either direction will keep you closer to your original course, however you may decide it is safer to maneuver your ship 30 degrees in either direction to increase safety. You should also adhere to the rules of the road of steering a ship, which dictate that if it is safer to do so, you should pass behind the other ship.

Your ship will be represented by a pink triangular shape. The cargo ship is represented by a red triangular shape. They will both be moving slowly. A green circular marker represents your destination. A black bar is shown that illustrates the minimum safe distance two ships should be apart. In the best case scenario, your ship will arrive at the destination just as time expires.

After each trial you will be given a score based on three factors, safety, procedure (following the rules of the road to be described below), and efficiency. Top scores will be anonymously displayed on the leaderboard in the lab!

You will be given feedback via the miss distance of the two ships, this will provide the space (in pixels) between the two ships at the closest point. Larger numbers equal safer maneuvers.

To assist your decision-making process, you have access to the new Collision Avoidance System. This system, CASkade, provides advice for the optimal directional change to avoid a collision and maximize the miss distance. This advice will be presented at the 16 second mark and you will need to make your decision before the 24 second mark. This gives you 8 seconds to make a course correction. You will need to make your decision within this time frame. Additionally, CASkade's advice was retrieved from optimal maneuvers executed at the 16 second mark. Advice will become less useful later in the scenario.

While CASkade provides valuable advice on how to avoid a collision, like automation in the real world, it is not perfect and sometimes may be incorrect.

To the right of the display are the controls. In this area, you have the ability to manipulate directional change, these are represented as 5 radio buttons above a steering wheel. You must first press the pause button. THEN Select the appropriate radio button you can command a turn to the left or right. You will see your ship start to turn immediately. Remember, you cannot change your controls unless the game is paused. After you are finished making changes to your controls you may resume the game by pressing the resume game button (same as the pause game button). Below your directional controls, you have the "Pause/Resume Game" button. In the box below, you have the CASkade informational display, which is designed to offer advice on what the safest maneuver potentially is. Finally, you have the final miss distance, and current score below.

Even if you decide to continue on a straight path, you still need to pause the game when you make that decision, then resume it. This will ensure your decision is recorded by the program!

Note: you cannot change the speed of the Lexington, only the direction the ship is moving!

Before making a course correction, you should keep in mind a few maritime navigation rules – the "rules of the road" for ships.

You may adjust your course only once. You should adjust your course if you believe that there is danger of a collision. After making your course corrections, and pressing the "resume" button, the scenario will run to completion.

If you collide with the cargo ship, the ships will cease movement, and the scenario will pause until the remaining time has expired. Otherwise, after avoiding the cargo ship, your ship will employ an autopilot to make the best possible final course correction in an attempt to arrive at the destination at the correct time.

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Press the button below to Begin


Press the "Pause Game" button to pause the game while you make changes.

Press it again to resume the game.

*Default settings: 0° heading, 80% throttle.

CASkade Recommendation


Thank you for your participation!

Please read the instructions below to ensure that you have completed this study and RECIEVE CREDIT FOR YOUR PARTICIPATION.

Participant ID

Total Score

** If you are completing this survey for PSY100 or PSY250 credit, you must OPEN THIS LINK IN A NEW TAB TO RECIVE PARTICIPATION CREDIT

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After you have opened the link above in a new tab, please complete the following survey, press submit below!!!!

Below are 5 questions pertaining to the experiment you just participated in, please answer them on a scale from 1-10, 1 being "Not at all", and 10 being "Always".

1. Did you trust the automated system to give accurate advice?

2. Did you follow the advice given by the automation?

3. Did you ever feel like the automation was less accurate than 90%?

4. Did you find yourself prioritizing the rules of the road given to you over the advice provided by the automation?

5. Did you find that the automation helped you navigate compared to having no aid at all?