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Lin SHI, Yue ZHANG; Vertical and Horizontal Arrangements of Chinese Characters. Journal of Vision 2016;16(12):1423. doi: 10.1167/16.12.1423.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Vertical and horizontal arrangements of English, Chinese, and other languages showed different characteristics of reading in many aspects including eye movements, reading speed, and optimal viewing positions. Here, we were interested in the visual aesthetics of vertical and horizontal arrangements of Chinese characters. Inside a chamber room, a 27-inch LCD monitor was masked by a square dark board with a square window. The size of the Chinese character image on the screen was 2 visual degrees. The Chinese character images were created from the stone inscription sets handwritten by Zhenqing YAN in the Tang Dynasty, who was one of the greatest calligrapher in Chinese history. An arrangement consisted of 7 images, which were arranged initially at random positions near the central vertical or horizontal line on a grey square background sized 17 visual degrees. Twenty participants were asked to make aesthetic arrangements of the Chinese character images in the horizontal or vertical direction using drag-and-drop operations controlled by the mouse. Thirty vertical arrangements and thirty horizontal arrangements were included alternately in each participant's experiment. After the arrangements of all participants, evaluations were given by them with values ranging from 1 to 10, and high values indicated better visual aesthetic of arrangements. The participants' eye movements and operations were both recorded in the experiment. Results showed that, (1) the duration of vertical arrangement operations was significantly lower than that of horizontal arrangement operations; (2) the evaluation values of vertical arrangements were significantly higher than those of horizontal arrangements; (3) both average amplitudes of fixational eye movements in vertical arrangement operations and evaluations were significantly higher than those in horizontal arrangement operations and evaluations respectively. The results indicated that vertical arrangements tended to be more visually aesthetic than horizontal arrangements for Chinese characters.
Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2016
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