Another VR breakthrough as Disney researchers integrate moving physical objects and virtual worlds

It might look like a man simply catching a tennis ball, but a new video from Disney Research shows much more than that.

Disney’s researchers have developed a way for users to be able to accurately catch a physical ball while they are immersed in a VR environment, opening up a world of possibilities for the integration of real-world moving objects and virtual experiences.

The experiment involved a virtual ball that tracked the projected trajectory of the real ball, and a target catching location for the user, which also shows the user from which direction the ball is arriving. Inside the Oculus headset, the user can see a simple background, the virtual ball, and his virtual “hands”. The scene is kept minimalistic in order to achieve an up to 150fps frame rate and reduce latency as much as possible.

In the lab’s pilot study, the ball was thrown 140 times and caught 132 times.

“In this work, we explore haptic sensations in virtual reality promoting the idea of users interacting with dynamic physical objects,” says the Disney Research paper, Catching a Ball in Virtual Reality.

If problems of latency, depth perception, frame rates and tracking precision can be overcome, the paper says this could be the first step towards “more complicated dynamic object interactions which can be used to further immerse users in virtual environments”.

“Thus, combining virtual and physical dynamic interactions to enrich virtual reality experiences is feasible,” it says.

disney research  virtual reality  vr 
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It might look like a man simply catching a tennis ball, but a new video from Disney Research shows much more than that. Disney’s researchers have developed a way for users to be able to accurately catch a physical ball while they are immersed in a VR environment, opening up a world of possibilities for the integration of real-world moving objects and virtual experiences. The experiment involved a virtual ball
TAW,VAT,HAM
Disney Research laboratories show combining virtual and physical dynamic interactions in VR is feasible / Disney Research
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