Tag Archives: Error

LEGO-like solution for error management in hotel

Today’s travelers are not looking for a just tooth brush. They are looking for an experience, something they can relate to. Whether an environmentally conscious traveler or business traveler, guests are demanding more out of their hotel stays than ever before (see Trends Changing the Way Guests and Hoteliers View Amenities). One of the frequent requests travelers make is that they need a new personal item provided complimentary for use in the bathroom (e.g., razor) after they used one before. However, guests often re-locate many amenities, and therefore whether a specific personal item needs to be replaced with a new one or not is difficult to identify. Put differently, an accident (e.g., a new razor is not available!) can occur when a housekeeper makes an mistake or error (e.g., I thought the guests did not use a razor…). What can we do to prevent this from happening?



The Venice Hotel Shenzhen, China, solved this problem intuitively; personal items are separately packaged in the paper boxes and assembled into a kit like LEGO bricks. Doing this will help housekeepers instantly identify which personal items need to be replaced among a wide variety of items including tooth brush, comb, sanitary bag, vanity kit, sewing kit, shower cap, and razor.


How can we learn and acquire skills?

20131014_Stellan Ohlsson @ SKKU_Skill acquisition (2)

Stellan Ohlsson, Professor in Psychology at University of Illinois at Chicago visited COGENG (Cognitive Engineering Lab) at SKKU and gave a speech on skill acquisition. He introduced his own work of learning from errors in which he argues that, in order to acquire or specializes in a certain skill (e.g., changing a lane to the left while driving), people should not only perform a certain task (e.g., turning the steering wheel to the left) but also detect and correct errors (e.g., turning the steering wheel to the left only when a car behind approaches). According to his constraint based approach, a skill is acquired only when a certain action with a negative outcome is unlearned (e.g., turning the steering wheel to the left slowly so that being hit by the car behind).

Certainly, there are many more ways to acquire skills. According to his review paper published in 2008, there are at least nine different ways of how people acquire skills.

1. Internalize direct instructions

2. Generalize from specific examples

3. Analogize to prior skill knowledge

4. Reason from prior declarative knowledge

5. Encode results of heuristic search

6. Strengthen positive outcomes

7. Unlearn actions with negative outcomes

8. Discover short cuts in execution histories

9. Accumulate statistical information