Toward Universal Tangible Objects: Optimizing Haptic Pinching Sensations in 3D Interaction
PubDate: August 2019
Writers: Xavier de Tinguy; Claudio Pacchierotti; Maud Marchal; Anatole Lécuyer
Tangible objects are a simple yet effective way for providing haptic sensations in Virtual Reality. For achieving a compelling illusion, there should be a good correspondence between what users see in the virtual environment and what they touch in the real world. The haptic features of the tangible object should indeed match those of the corresponding virtual one in terms of, e.g., size, local shape, mass, texture. A straightforward solution is to create perfect tangible replicas of all the virtual objects in the scene. However, this is often neither feasible nor desirable. This paper presents an innovative approach enabling the use of few tangible objects to render many virtual ones. The proposed algorithm analyzes the available tangible and virtual objects to find the best grasps in terms of matching haptic sensations. It starts by identifying several suitable pinching poses on the considered tangible and virtual objects. Then, for each pose, it evaluates a series of haptically-salient characteristics. Next, it identifies the two most similar pinching poses according to these metrics, one on the tangible and one on the virtual object. Finally, it highlights the chosen pinching pose, which provides the best matching sensation between what users see and touch. The effectiveness of our approach is evaluated through a user study. Results show that the algorithm is able to well combine several haptically-salient object features to find convincing pinches between the given tangible and virtual objects.