chapter  4
12 Pages

Certifying Human-Machine Systems

ByPeter Hancock

PREFACE I want to preface this work with a brief account of its history. Through the very kind invitation of the organizers, I was able to attend the meeting on which this volume is based. Like others, I was asked to provide a contribution to be brought to the meeting. This originally appeared as ‘certifying life’ (Hancock, 1994a) and during the meeting I developed a second commentary on the problem of certification and legislation that was the topic of one of the individual workshops (Hancock, 1993b). Some time after the meeting, I revisited these works and combined them into a single chapter for a book I was writing entitled Essays on the Future of Human-Machine Systems (Hancock, 1997). I had divined, with the editors of this volume, that the original publication would unfortunately have limited circulation and as the questions of certification are so crucial, it might be beneficial to solicit a wider

audience for the work. This offering is based on this synthesized effort with some brief requested revisions. I offer it for consideration in large part because it was written at such a traumatic time for me and raises issues that are, for me at least, still to be resolved.