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Human Machine Interfaces (HMI's) have changed over the last 10 years.
To keep the cost down Machine builders have opted to use dedicated HMI's Today the cost of the dedicated HMI's is about the same as Windows based Touchscreen. This means that the cost of an 15" Open Archetectured HMI is about the same cost as a small 5" dedicated HMI.
Uniop Interface
The two line display has changed to a 15, 17 and even 20"; touchscreen. From unoticable to being the machine focal point.
Eurotherm Link Screen
The considerations that one has to have for this type of operator input are as follows: How large of an display area do I need ? Do you want or need screen after screen or do you want one main screen and then some smaller overlay's that aid in the machine operation and navigation. Having an operator fumble from screen to screen is a sign of poor design. 'Touch and do' should be the method, not get out the handbook and try to figure out where you need to be or where you are.
Allen Bradley 1500P
Eurotherm LINK Touchscreen Display
This Touchscreen is Rsview32
For a Double Twist Strander
Most of today's HMI's offer the following :
Operator Control
Alarm Annunciation
Trends (Data logging)
Recipe Control
Main Screen
Fault Screen
Multiple Stop Screen
AB Industrial Keyboard
User Programmed Input Button's
AB Industrial Mouse
Panelmate 5000
A second decision that one has to make is what will my operator be doing, are his hands covered in materials that are detremantal to the touch area  or is it possible to keep the hands clean.
An Industrial Mouse or keyboard may be the answer. All screens today are available in Resistive and Capacitve sensitive area's. Another option is to go away from Touch type screens and to use integrated button type screens. These unit have one draw back and that they are based on propriotory systems.
Industrial Keyboard
Industrial Mouse
There are other options to the Touchscreen and these are typically provided for by manufacturers of operator Interfaces. Some include a Keypad or dedicated / programmable side buttons that allow operational control without the touch sensitive requirements.
Rewire Automation has been working with Touchscreens for the past 10 years. We are well versed in the Latest programming capabilities and we can show you how being 1000's of miles away is not really an issue. Whether it is a new design or an old  unit that needs replacing, call us you will be glad you did.
AB 1400e
1400e (non-touchscreen)
Bottom: Panelview 1400e Touchscreen
Top: Panelview 1400e non-touchscreen
Allen Bradley 300c
Most larger screens (12">) will have dedicated computers attached most would be running some version of windows (XP,CE,Vista) and act just like real computers. The HMI software locks out the operator from the operating system therby ensuring years of usability.
Top: Panelview Web based Interface