The effect of tracking delay on awareness states in immersive virtual environments: an initial exploration

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Papdakis, G ; Mania, K ; Coxon, M ; Koutrolis, E (2011)

This paper presents an experimental methodology exploring the effect of tracking latency on object recognition after exposure to an immersive VE, in terms of both scene context and associated awareness states. System latency (time delay) and its visible consequences are fundamental Virtual Environment (VE) deficiencies that can hamper spatial awareness and memory. The immersive simulation consisted of a radiosity-rendered space divided in three zones including a kitchen/dining area, an office area and a lounge area. The space was populated by objects consistent as well as inconsistent with each zone's context. The simulation was displayed on a stereo head-tracked Head Mounted Display. Participants across two conditions of varying latency (system minimum latency vs added latency condition) were exposed to the VE and completed an object-based memory recognition task. Participants also reported one of three states of awareness following each recognition response which reflected either the recollection of contextual detail, the sense of familiarity unaccompanied by contextual information or even informed guesses. Preliminary results from initial pilot studies reveal better memory performance of objects in the low latency condition. A disproportionately large proportion of guess responses for consistent objects viewed with high latency is also observed and correspondingly a disproportionately low proportion of remember responses for consistent objects in the same latency condition.
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