Posted: July 21, 2017 3:35 AM

ONR Working to Make Data Analyzing Easier, Provide More Training

By JAMES PETERSON, Special Correspondent

WASHINGTON — The focus for the Office of Naval Research (ONR) with regard to data collection remains making the job easier for those who have to make sense out of the data, a ONR official said during a July 21 presentation at the Naval Future Force Science and Technology Expo. ONR also wants to address the underutilization of systems through improved training.

While some in the military ask data collecting system builders to make the technology easier to understand, it’s not just a matter of copying an iPhone style interface. Dr. Kip Krebs, a ONR program officer, said it’s a lot more complicated that simply changing the design and look of the systems.

“It seems fairly easy in the scheme of things, but it’s very complex, very difficult and very time consuming,” Krebs said, elaborating on his program’s goal. “The idea behind it is when I talk about mission planning, it’s planning to re-execute and assess.”

Making sure the technology is being used by the military is a main goal itself, according to Krebs.

“Most of the systems that we deliver today are underutilized,” he said. “You can take a look at systems where people are actually using them and looking at how the actual user is operating is different than how the designer intended.”

The solution, is training. Ideally, one-on-one training is the best solution, but Krebs knows that sort of training is “unsustainable” and “too expensive.”

Instead, Krebs wants to focus on adaptive training, where the teaching changes based on the current skills of the trainee. The more the trainee understands the concept, the harder the training becomes. On the other hand, if a trainee struggles with a certain concept, the training goes down a notch in difficulty.

“You’re able to observe the subject,” Krebs said, explaining the adaptive training program. “You can assess their performance, and then based upon their performance make a response. We are currently transferring this capability within the submarine force.”

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