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“Jump up and down and move it around.”
Pedro LopezAn assistant professor of computer science at the University of Chicago who focuses on integrating interfacing with the human body by exploring interface paradigms to replace wearables, wants to make jumping in VR a more enjoyable experience. .
Lopez and his team created a mechanical backpack. Jump mods By simulating the force on your body and moving your weight up and down, it helps to increase the feeling of falling and jumping in the virtual world.
JumpMod can also simulate what it feels like to be strapped to a roller coaster and take your first big drop, or ride in the backseat of a car and take a particularly sharp turn.
The mechanical backpack features a 2-kilogram weighted cube mounted on linear rails, moving the user up and down at varying speeds depending on what the user is experiencing in VR. In this way, the team was able to create a system that replicated the sensation of physical movement.
JumpMod utilizes a belt drive and encoded mechanism for quick and precise movement. that motor Seeeduino Xiao nRF52840 BLE A Sense microcontroller development board that also offers wireless connectivity so you can jump without worrying about getting tangled in wires.
JumpMod uses the HTC VR headset and HTC’s lighthouse V2 tracking system to detect when the user has jumped and then calculate the user’s jump sequence based on height and descent.
The system then estimates body weight movements in relation to the jump phase to provide a more accurate and authentic experience. This includes weight movement and up-and-down movement, giving you the feeling of jumping at different heights. The system can also adjust the firmness and softness of the landing.
A user study was conducted to test the accuracy of the system using a dozen participants. Research revealed that the algorithm was 94% accurate in identifying all four of her jump phases.
In a demonstration video posted on Youtubesee a user jumping and say, “I feel like I jumped high.”
Lopez and his team focused on analyzing how users’ perceptions of jumping were affected by using JumpMods. The system was able to generate different sensations based on the type of jump performed by the participants. The results of this study revealed a staggering 81% accuracy.
Another study was then conducted to analyze how users’ perceptions of jumps were affected when playing a VR game with a JumpMod. The game included various elements such as wind and power-ups that increased the user’s ability to jump. Studies have shown that the devices have significantly different effects on the user’s perception of jumps when using a backpack and a VR headset.
The company’s team members are currently working on additional sensing systems and actuators that can be used to further enhance the experience.
Lopez recently presented his research at the conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems in Hamburg, Germany, detailing how the JumpMod system can be used to improve training through an enhanced haptic feedback experience. bottom. You can read more about JumpMod here.
Feature image credit: New Scientist via YouTube