Problem-solving focuses on defining and analyzing problems, then finding viable solutions through an iterative process that requires brainstorming and understanding of what is known and what is unknown in the problem space. With rapid changes of economic landscape in the United States, new types of jobs emerge when new industries are created. Employers report that problem-solving is the most important skill they are looking for in job applicants. However, there are major concerns about the lack of problem-solving skills in engineering students. This lack of problem-solving skills calls for an approach to measure and enhance these skills. In this research, we propose to understand and improve problem-solving skills in engineering education by integrating eye-tracking sensing with virtual reality (VR) manufacturing. First, we simulate a manufacturing system in a VR game environment that we call a VR learning factory. The VR learning factory is built in the Unity game engine with the HTC Vive VR system for navigation and motion tracking. The headset is custom-fitted with Tobii eye-tracking technology, allowing the system to identify the coordinates and objects that a user is looking at, at any given time during the simulation. In the environment, engineering students can see through the headsetmore »
Embodied Third-Person Virtual Locomotion using a Single Depth Camera
Third-person is a popular perspective for video games, but virtual reality (VR) seems to be primarily experienced from a first-person point of view (POV). While a first-person POV generally offers the highest presence; a third-person POV allows users to see their avatar; which allows for a better bond, and the higher vantage point generally increases spatial awareness and navigation. Third-person locomotion is generally implemented using a controller or keyboard, with users often sitting down; an approach that is considered to offer a low presence and embodiment. We present a novel thirdperson locomotion method that enables a high avatar embodiment by integrating skeletal tracking with head-tilt based input to enable omnidirectional navigation beyond the confines of available tracking space. By interpreting movement relative to an avatar, the user will always keep facing the camera which optimizes skeletal tracking and keeps required instrumentation minimal (1 depth camera). A user study compares the performance, usability, VR sickness incidence and avatar embodiment of our method to using a controller for a navigation task that involves interacting with objects. Though a controller offers a higher performance and usability, our locomotion method offered a significantly higher avatar embodiment.
- Award ID(s):
- Publication Date:
- NSF-PAR ID:
- Journal Name:
- Proceedings of Graphics Interface 2021
- Sponsoring Org:
- National Science Foundation
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