September 2017
Volume 17, Issue 10
Open Access
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   August 2017
The effect of stereoscopic cues on multiple object tracking in a 3D virtual environment
Author Affiliations
  • Steven Oliveira
    Psychology, Florida Atlantic University
  • Mohammed Islam
    Psychology, Florida Atlantic University
  • Elan Barenholtz
    Psychology, Florida Atlantic University
  • Regynald Augustin
    Psychology, Florida Atlantic University
  • Shannon Whitney
    Psychology, Florida Atlantic University
Journal of Vision August 2017, Vol.17, 1311. doi:
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      Steven Oliveira, Mohammed Islam, Elan Barenholtz, Regynald Augustin, Shannon Whitney; The effect of stereoscopic cues on multiple object tracking in a 3D virtual environment. Journal of Vision 2017;17(10):1311.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Research on Multiple Object Tracking (MOT)—the ability to track several target objects with independent motions among a set of distracters— has typically involved 2-dimensional displays in which the stimuli move in a single depth plane. However, under natural conditions, objects move in three dimensions which may yield additional challenges or potential benefits to tracking. To date, only a small number of studies have been conducted using stereoscopic 3D depth in an MOT context and none, to our knowledge, have directly assessed the role of stereo in tracking performance. To investigate this, we used a fully immersive virtual-reality environment (HTC VIVE) in which participants were required to track 2 to 5 moving objects out of 8 total objects. The tracked objects were spheres that moved in an environment that was frictionless and gravity-less but with real world bouncing mechanics. We compared performance to a condition in which participants viewed the same stimuli without stereoscopic depth cues (the VR stimuli seen on a standard computer screen). Results showed that participants were more accurate in the VR condition than the 2D environment with 3D cues. These results demonstrate that people can successfully track multiple objects moving in three dimensions and that stereoscopic information facilitates this ability. The obtained results also suggest that stereoscopic displays provide a more ecologically valid context for MOT experiments, than traditional setups 2-dimensional displays.

Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2017


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