PhyShare: Sharing Physical Interaction in Virtual Reality

Virtual reality has recently been gaining wide adoption. Yet the absence of effective haptic feedback in virtual reality scenarios can strongly detract from the suspension of disbelief needed to bridge the virtual and physical worlds. PhyShare proposes a new haptic user interface based on actuated robots. Because participants do not directly observe these robotic proxies, multiple mappings between physical robots and virtual proxies can be supported. PhyShare bots can act either as directly touchable objects or invisible carriers of physical objects, depending on the scenario. They also support distributed collaboration, allowing remotely located VR collaborators to share the same physical feedback. A preliminary user study evaluates PhyShare for user awareness, preference, acknowledgement, reliability and related factors.

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