Third-Person Navigation of Whole-Planet Terrain in a Head-tracked Stereoscopic Environment
Wartell, Zachary Justin
Hodges, Larry F.
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Navigation and interaction in stereoscopic virtual environments with head-tracking for very large data sets present several challenges beyond those encountered with smaller or monoscopic data sets. First, zooming by approaching or retreating from a target must be augmented by integrating scale as a seventh degree of freedom. Second, in order to maintain good stereoscopic imagery, the interface must: maintain stereo image pairs that the user perceives as a single 3D image, minimize loss of perceived depth since stereoscopic imagery cannot properly occlude the screen's frame, provide maximum depth information, and place objects at distances where they are best manipulated. Finally, the navigation interface must work when the environment is displayed at any scale. This paper addresses these problems for god's-eye-view or third person navigation of a specific large-scale virtual environment: a high-resolution terrain database covering an entire planet.