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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The effectiveness of three dimensional interaction Boritz, James

Abstract

Most interaction with computers today takes place in a two dimensional environment. Even when using three dimensional graphics applications, input is often still restricted to two dimensions. Many believe that the use of three dimensional input devices will alleviate this restriction and allow for a much more natural human-machine dialog. This thesis seeks to establish how factors dealing with visual feedback and task structure affect the ability to perform interactive tasks in a three dimensional virtual environment. The factors investigated were stereoscopic vision, motion parallax, stimulus arrangement and stimulus complexity. Four tasks were studied. These tasks were: point location, docking, line tracing and curve tracing. All the tasks used a six degree of freedom input device to control a pointer in a three dimensional virtual environment. Four experiments corresponding to the four tasks were conducted to investigate these factors. Among other things the results showed the following. Stereoscopic vision provided a strong benefit to positioning-based tasks, but this benefit was weakened in the case of tracing tasks. Motion parallax via head-tracking often had no effect upon task performance and where an effect was found it was often detrimental. The position of stimuli influenced performance across all of the tasks. The orientation of stimuli influenced performance in the task in which it was varied.

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