Tangible interactions in Virtual Reality environments
European Tangible Interaction Studio
Virtual Reality (VR) provides opportunity for immersive experiences in several fields of application, in particular in training and entertainment. Integrating tangible interaction with virtual environments that mimic real world situations can provide a tremendous enrichment to the user experience. Indeed, one of the main barriers to immersivity virtual objects is the use of fixed controllers with poor affordance. Touching, grasping, pushing, squeezing, if executed with common controllers are
... atural, impractical and sometimes frustrating. The paper presents the outcomes of a multidisciplinary panel conducted during ETIS 2020. The purpose of the panel was to engage a reflection on possible ways to integrate tangible interactions in virtual reality scenarios. To this extent, a case study was presented describing the development of a physical controller used in a virtual simulation of a DNA extraction procedure in a biotechnology laboratory. The case study shows the potential of using a real pipette to make the extraction task easy to perform in VR exploiting the affordance of the real object when gripping, pushing, moving the pipette. This opens new possibilities for enhanced multisensory interactions in VR environments.