Indexed on: 13 Feb '14Published on: 13 Feb '14Published in: Virtual Reality
A solution for interaction using finger tracking in a cubic immersive virtual reality system (or immersive cube) is presented. Rather than using a traditional wand device, users can manipulate objects with fingers of both hands in a close-to-natural manner for moderately complex, general purpose tasks. Our solution couples finger tracking with a real-time physics engine, combined with a heuristic approach for hand manipulation, which is robust to tracker noise and simulation instabilities. A first study has been performed to evaluate our interface, with tasks involving complex manipulations, such as balancing objects while walking in the cube. The user’s finger-tracked manipulation was compared to manipulation with a 6 degree-of-freedom wand (or flystick), as well as with carrying out the same task in the real world. Users were also asked to perform a free task, allowing us to observe their perceived level of presence in the scene. Our results show that our approach provides a feasible interface for immersive cube environments and is perceived by users as being closer to the real experience compared to the wand. However, the wand outperforms direct manipulation in terms of speed and precision. We conclude with a discussion of the results and implications for further research.