In the 1980's, the visual display terminal (VDT) was introduced in workplaces of many countries. Soon thereafter, an upsurge in reported cases of related health problems, such as musculoskeletal disorders and eyestrain, was seen. Recently, the flat panel display or notebook personal computer (PC) became the most remarkable feature in modern workplaces with VDTs and even in homes. A proactive approach must be taken to avert foreseeable ergonomic and occupational health problems from the use of this new technology. Because of its distinct physical and optical characteristics, the ergonomic requirements for notebook PCs in terms of machine layout, workstation design, lighting conditions, among others, should be different from the CRT-based computers. The Japan Ergonomics Society (JES) technical committee came up with a set of guidelines for notebook PC use following exploratory discussions that dwelt on its ergonomic aspects. To keep in stride with this development, the Technical Committee on Human-Computer Interaction under the auspices of the International Ergonomics Association worked towards the international issuance of the guidelines. This paper unveils the result of this collaborative effort.
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