User judgments of perceived and traversed distances in a real shopping mall and a corresponding virtual model

Hengshan Li, Panagiotis Mavros, Arnout Sabbe, Tyler Thrash, Victor Schinazi, Christoph Hölscher

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting AbstractResearchpeer-review


The goal of this study is twofold. First, to investigate whether underestimation of perceived and traversed distances in virtual environments (VEs) could be ameliorated with an HTC Vive, one of the most popular head-mounted displays (HMDs). Perceived distance refers to estimates of the egocentric distance between the observer and an object immediately perceivable. Traversed distance refers to estimates of a route’s length learned during movement through the
environment. Second, to examine the effects of three control interfaces in VEs (a treadmill, teleportation, and a touchpad) on judgement of traversed distance. The treadmill has a dish-shaped platform with a slippery surface. Participants ‘‘shuffle slide’’ on the treadmill in order to walk in VEs. This mode provides proprioceptive feedback. In contrast, no such feedback is available during teleportation, as virtual agents are transferred from one location to another without traversing the VEs in between. In the present experiment, participants were guided to learn nine different routes in a shopping mall (virtual or
real). They were asked to estimate perceived distance to a red cylinder
at the start of each route and estimate traversed distance after ‘‘walking’’ this route, both measured by verbal reports. These measures were converted into estimated-to-actual distance ratios prior to the analysis of variance. The results demonstrated that perceived distances in the HTC Vive were still slightly underestimated, but this underestimation was lower than previous research using old HMDs. We also found that traversed distance estimates after teleportation were overestimated compared to the treadmill and touchpad
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S44
Number of pages1
JournalCognitive Processing
Issue numberSuppl 1
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2018
Externally publishedYes
Event7th International Conference on Spatial Cognition: Spatial Cognition in a Multimedia and Intercultural World - Rome, Italy
Duration: 10 Sept 201814 Sept 2018
Conference number: 7th


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