Past research on anthropometry, especially in the industry of external ear worn products, stresses that positive comfort is enhanced when there is sufficient knowledge of human factors; however, most anthropometric studies focus only on the acquirement and presentation of data.
The aim of this paper is to provide with different methods to support design applications of 3-dimensional head and ear data with a focus on external ear products.
Two hundred persons representing the Danish population were scanned. The 3D data was collected, refined and analysed in 3 meaningful ways: Advanced geometry, visualisations of data and for the generation of archetypes.
A matrix containing 29 new ear dimensions was generated. The application of methods led to the development of 9 additional dimensions. The paper finally presents all phases of the analysis of the 3D data in the form of a methodological framework.
The paper contributes with, in addition to the methodological framework, techniques to extract data based on product understanding and how the data can be used to define archetypes for focus groups and other qualitative assessments. In their endeavour to develop successful and comfortable products designers should focus more on fitting the task into the human by benchmarking human dimensions against product data.