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Head Up Visualization of Spatial Sound Sources in Virtual Reality for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing People

Research output: Contribution to book/anthology/report/proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review

  • Mohammadreza Mirzaei, Institute of Visual Computing and Human-Centered Technology, TU Wien, Austria
  • Peter Kán
  • Hannes Kaufmann, Institute of Visual Computing and Human-Centered Technology, TU Wien, Austria
This paper presents a novel method for the visualization of 3D spatial sounds in Virtual Reality (VR) for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing (DHH) people. Our method enhances traditional VR devices with additional haptic and visual feedback, which aids spatial sound localization. The proposed system automatically analyses 3D sound from VR application, and it indicates the direction of sound sources to a user by two Vibro-motors and two Light-Emitting Diodes (LEDs). The benefit of automatic sound analysis is that our method can be used in any VR application without modifying the application itself. We evaluated the proposed method for 3D spatial sound visualization in a user study. Additionally, the conducted user study investigated which condition (corresponding to different senses) leads to faster performance in 3D sound localization task. For this purpose, we compared three conditions: haptic feedback only, LED feedback only, combined haptic and LED feedback. Our study results suggest that DHH participants could complete sound-related VR tasks significantly faster using LED and haptic+LED conditions in comparison to only haptic feedback. The presented method for spatial sound visualization can be directly used to enhance VR applications for use by DHH persons, and the results of our user study can serve as guidelines for the future design of accessible VR systems.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2021 IEEE Virtual Reality and 3D User Interfaces (VR)
Number of pages6
PublisherIEEE
Publication year2021
Pages582-587
ISBN (print)978-0-7381-2556-5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021
EventIEEE Annual International Symposium Virtual Reality - Virtual event
Duration: 27 Mar 20213 Apr 2021

Conference

ConferenceIEEE Annual International Symposium Virtual Reality
LocationVirtual event
Periode27/03/202103/04/2021

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