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Kinematic Evaluation of Virtual Walking Trajectories

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4 Author(s)
Cirio, G. ; INRIA Rennes, Rennes, France ; Olivier, A. ; Marchal, M. ; Pettre, J.

Virtual walking, a fundamental task in Virtual Reality (VR), is greatly influenced by the locomotion interface being used, by the specificities of input and output devices, and by the way the virtual environment is represented. No matter how virtual walking is controlled, the generation of realistic virtual trajectories is absolutely required for some applications, especially those dedicated to the study of walking behaviors in VR, navigation through virtual places for architecture, rehabilitation and training. Previous studies focused on evaluating the realism of locomotion trajectories have mostly considered the result of the locomotion task (efficiency, accuracy) and its subjective perception (presence, cybersickness). Few focused on the locomotion trajectory itself, but in situation of geometrically constrained task. In this paper, we study the realism of unconstrained trajectories produced during virtual walking by addressing the following question: did the user reach his destination by virtually walking along a trajectory he would have followed in similar real conditions? To this end, we propose a comprehensive evaluation framework consisting on a set of trajectographical criteria and a locomotion model to generate reference trajectories. We consider a simple locomotion task where users walk between two oriented points in space. The travel path is analyzed both geometrically and temporally in comparison to simulated reference trajectories. In addition, we demonstrate the framework over a user study which considered an initial set of common and frequent virtual walking conditions, namely different input devices, output display devices, control laws, and visualization modalities. The study provides insight into the relative contributions of each condition to the overall realism of the resulting virtual trajectories.

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Visualization and Computer Graphics, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:19 ,  Issue: 4 )