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  Pointing to hidden landmarks is similar in real and virtual environments

van Veen, H., Sellen, K., & Bülthoff, H. (1998). Pointing to hidden landmarks is similar in real and virtual environments. Poster presented at Sixth Annual Workshop on Object Perception and Memory (OPAM 1998), Dallas, TX, USA.

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Item Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0005-DF99-4 Version Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0005-DF9A-3
Genre: Poster

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van Veen, HAHC1, 2, Author              
Sellen, K1, 2, Author              
Bülthoff, HH1, 2, Author              
Affiliations:
1Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society, ou_1497794              
2Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society, ou_1497797              

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 Abstract: More and more researchers are acknowledging the significance of virtual environments for the study of human perception and behaviour. Especially when studying abilities for which the human-in-the-loop element forms a key ingredient -- such as in wayfinding and visually guided locomotion -- do virtual reality techniques constitute an increasingly popular tool for research. We try to develop a better understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of this approach by comparing perception and spatial behaviour in real and virtual environments. The current study compares pointing accuracy in an outdoor environment (a 600 by 400 m section of the highly irregular centre of Tuebingen) with that in a corresponding virtual environment. Standing near one of eleven well-known landmarks, subjects (n=10) had to turn a pointer in the estimated direction of each of the other ten invisible (occluded) landmarks. This procedure was repeated from all eleven locations along the subjects' route through town (all subjects knew the city very well). The second experiment was conducted in the laboratory with the same group of subjects. They were seated in the middle of a 7m diameter half-circular projection screen on which 180 by 48 degree fragments of panoramic photographs taken near each of the above mentioned landmarks were displayed. Pointing was accomplished by rotating the image until the object of interest was thought to be in the straight ahead direction. The results show that errors made in the virtual environment are quite similar to errors made outdoors: the mean absolute pointing error was only slightly better outdoors (10.9±0.4deg) than in the laboratory (12.9±0.5deg). The pattern of systematic errors was strikingly similar between the two environments. We conclude that a) subjects are capable of using spatial knowledge acquired in a real environment for accurately orienting themselves in the corresponding virtual environment, and b) the role of artificial pictorial cues introduced by the (large) projection screen is negligible for pointing tasks.

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 Dates: 1998-11
 Publication Status: Published online
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Title: Sixth Annual Workshop on Object Perception and Memory (OPAM 1998)
Place of Event: Dallas, TX, USA
Start-/End Date: 1998-11-19

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Title: Sixth Annual Workshop on Object Perception and Memory (OPAM 1998)
Source Genre: Proceedings
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Pages: - Volume / Issue: - Sequence Number: 19 Start / End Page: - Identifier: -