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Conference Papers Year : 2024

Understanding Interaction and Breakouts of Safety Boundaries in Virtual Reality Through Mixed-Method Studies

Abstract

Virtual Reality (VR) technologies become ubiquitous, allowing people to employ immersive experiences in their homes. Since VR participants are visually disconnected from their real-world environment, commercial products propose safety boundaries to prevent colliding with their surroundings. However, there is a lack of empirical knowledge on how people perceive and interact with safety boundaries in everyday VR usage. This paper investigates this re- search gap with two mixed-method empirical studies. Study 1 reports an online survey (n=48) collecting data about attitudes towards safety boundaries, behavior while interacting with them, and reasons for breakout. Our analysis with open coding reveals that some VR participants ignored safety boundaries intentionally, even breaking out of them and continuing their actions. Study 2 investigates how and why VR participants intentionally break out when interacting close to safety boundaries and obstacles by replicating breakouts in a lab study (n=12). Our interview and breakout data discover three strategies, revealing VR participants sometimes break out of boundaries based on their real-world spatial information. Finally, we discuss improving future VR safety mechanisms by supporting participants’ real-world spatial mental models using landmarks.
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hal-04547401 , version 1 (15-04-2024)

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Wen-Jie Tseng, Petros Dimitrios Kontrazis, Eric Lecolinet, Samuel Huron, Jan Gugenheimer. Understanding Interaction and Breakouts of Safety Boundaries in Virtual Reality Through Mixed-Method Studies. 2024 IEEE Conference Virtual Reality and 3D User Interfaces (VR), Mar 2024, Orlando (FL), United States. pp.482-492, ⟨10.1109/VR58804.2024.00069⟩. ⟨hal-04547401⟩
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