Team, Visitors, External Collaborators
Overall Objectives
Research Program
Application Domains
Highlights of the Year
New Software and Platforms
New Results
Bilateral Contracts and Grants with Industry
Partnerships and Cooperations
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Section: New Results

Augmented Reality Tools and Usages

Authoring AR by AR, abstraction and libraries

Participants : Flavien Lécuyer, Valérie Gouranton [contact] , Adrien Reuzeau, Ronan Gaugne, Bruno Arnaldi.

The demand for augmented reality applications is rapidly growing. In many domains, we observe a new interest for this technology, stressing the need for more efficient ways of producing augmented content. Similarly to virtual reality, interactive objects in augmented reality are a powerful means to improve the experience. While it is now well democratized for virtual reality, interactivity is still finding its way into augmented reality. To open the way to this interactive augmented reality, we designed a new methodology for the management of the interactions in augmented reality, supported by an authoring tool for the use by designers and domain experts [27]. This tool makes the production of interactive augmented content faster, while being scalable to the needs of each application. Usually in the creation of applications, a large amount of time is spent through discussions between the designer (or the domain expert), carrying the needs of the application, and the developer, holding the knowledge to create it (see Figure 8). Thanks to our tool, we reduce this time by allowing the designer to create an interactive application, without having to write a single line of code.

Figure 8. From left to right, the user (a) adds an interactive behaviour on a bottle of glue, (b) imports the interactions in the environment, and (c) uses the interaction to pour the virtual glue from the real bottle into a virtual pot

Studying Exocentric Distance Perception in Optical See-Through AR

Participants : Etienne Peillard, Ferran Argelaguet, Jean-Marie Normand, Anatole Lécuyer, Guillaume Moreau [contact] .

While perceptual biases have been widely investigated in Virtual Reality (VR), very few studies have considered the challenging environment of Optical See-through Augmented Reality (OST-AR). Moreover, regarding distance perception, existing works mainly focus on the assessment of egocentric distance perception, i.e. distance between the observer and a real or a virtual object. In this work, we studied exocentric distance perception in AR, hereby considered as the distance between two objects, none of them being directly linked to the user. We report a user study (n=29) aiming at estimating distances between two objects lying in a frontoparallel plane at 2.1m from the observer (i.e. in the medium-field perceptual space). Four conditions were tested in our study: real objects on the left and on the right of the participant (called real-real), virtual objects on both sides (virtual-virtual), a real object on the left and a virtual one on the right (real-virtual) and finally a virtual object on the left and a real object on the right (virtual-real). Participants had to reproduce the distance between the objects by spreading two real identical objects presented in front of them (see Figure 9). The main findings of this study are the overestimation (20%) of exocentric distances for all tested conditions. Surprisingly, the real-real condition was significantly more overestimated (by about 4%,p=.0166) compared to the virtual-virtual condition, i.e. participants obtained better estimates of the exocentric distance for the virtual-virtual condition. Finally, for the virtual-real/real-virtual conditions, the analysis showed a non-symmetrical behavior, which suggests that the relationship between real and virtual objects with respect to the user might be affected by other external factors. Considered together, these unexpected results illustrate the need for additional experiments to better understand the perceptual phenomena involved in exocentric distance perception with real and virtual objects [30].

Figure 9. Left, bench displaying two real spheres. The hinge-actuated moving panel, opened here, could be automatically opened/closed to reveal/hide the visual stimuli. Center, one of the two rails of the bench, seen from behind. An orange sphere is attached on top of a trolley that can slide on the rail. The trolley is moved by a stepper motor through a belt. The other half of the bench is symmetrical. Right, participants could provide the perceived exocentric distance by placing two sliding spheres. After the participants placed the spheres the system automatically took a picture of both spheres which was used to measure the distance between both spheres.

Influence of virtual objects' shadows and lighting coherence in AR

Participants : Etienne Peillard, Jean-Marie Normand, Guillaume Moreau [contact] .

This work focuses on how virtual objects' shadows as well as differences in alignment between virtual and real lighting influence distance perception in optical see‐through (OST) augmented reality (AR) [5]. Four hypotheses are pro-posed: (H1) Participants underestimate distances in OST AR; (H2) Virtual objects' shadows improve distance judgment accuracy in OST AR; (H3) Shadows with different realism levels have different influence on distance perception in OST AR; (H4) Different levels of lighting misalignment between real and virtual lights have different influence on distance perception in OST AR scenes. Two experiments were designed with an OST head mounted display(HMD), the Microsoft HoloLens. Participants had to match the position of a virtual object displayed in the OST‐HMD with a real target. Distance judgment accuracy was recorded under the different shadows and lighting conditions.The results validate hypotheses H2 and H4 but surprisingly showed no impact of the shape of virtual shadows on distance judgment accuracy thus rejecting hypothesis H3. Regarding hypothesis H1, we detected a trend toward underestimation; given the high variance of the data, more experiments are needed to confirm this result. Moreover, the study also reveals that perceived distance errors and completion time of trials increase along with targets' distance.

A study on differences in human perception in AR

Participants : Jean-Marie Normand, Guillaume Moreau [contact] .

With the recent growth in the development of augmented reality (AR) technologies, it is becoming important to study human perception of AR scenes. In order to detect whether users will suffer more from visual and operator fatigue when watching virtual objects through optical see‐through head‐mounted displays (OST‐HMDs), compared with watching real objects in the real world, we propose a comparative experiment including a virtual magic cube task and a real magic cube task [4]. The scores of the subjective questionnaires (SQ) and the values of the critical flicker frequency (CFF) were obtained from 18 participants. In our study, we use several electrooculogram (EOG) and heart rate variability (HRV) measures as objective indicators of visual and operator fatigue. Statistical analyses were performed to deal with the subjective and objective indicators in the two tasks. Our results suggest that participants were very likely to suffer more from visual and operator fatigue when watching virtual objects presented by the OST‐HMD. In addition, the present study provides hints that HRV and EOG measures could be used to explore how visual and operator fatigue are induced by AR content. Finally, three novel HRV measures are proposed to be used as potential indicators of operator fatigue.

This work was done in collaboration with the Beijing Engineering Research Center of Mixed Reality and Advanced Display (School of Optics and Photonics, Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing, China) and AICFVE (Beijing Film Academy, Beijing, China).