Effects of Unaugmented Periphery and Vibrotactile Feecback on Proxemics with Virtual Humans in AR


In this paper, we investigate factors and issues related to human locomotion behavior and proxemics in the presence of a real or virtual human in augmented reality (AR). First, we discuss a unique issue with current-state optical see-through head-mounted displays, namely the mismatch between a small augmented visual field and a large unaugmented periphery, and its potential impact on locomotion behavior in close proximity of virtual content. We discuss a potential simple solution based on restricting the field of view to the central region, and we present the results of a controlled human-subject study. The study results show objective benefits for this approach in producing behaviors that more closely match those that occur when seeing a real human, but also some drawbacks in overall acceptance of the restricted field of view. Second, we discuss the limited multimodal feedback provided by virtual humans in AR, present a potential improvement based on vibrotactile feedback induced via the floor to compensate for the limited augmented visual field, and report results showing that benefits of such vibrations are less visible in objective locomotion behavior than in subjective estimates of co-presence. Third, we investigate and document significant differences in the effects that real and virtual humans have on locomotion behavior in AR with respect to clearance distances, walking speed, and head motions. We discuss potential explanations for these effects related to social expectations, and analyze effects of different types of behaviors including idle standing, jumping, and walking that such real or virtual humans may exhibit in the presence of an observer.

To appear in IEEE VR 2018