2020 – 2021

Team Members: Payod Panda, Charles Ho

Tags: HapticsVR

With the rise of low-cost consumer VR headsets, immersive 3D drawing has been made more accessible to the general public. Many consumer apps and systems explored by HCI researchers enable the user to draw in mid-air. However, as compared to 2D drawing, 3D mid-air drawing in VR is challenging. Prior work has shown that VR mid-air sketches are less accurate than their 2D counterparts. One of the reasons for this is the lack of a physical surface while creating mid-air 3D drawings. While researchers have explored the use of physical surfaces such as tablets and other rigid planar surfaces in VR for sketching and modeling, explorations around morphable surfaces for this application remains limited. We present an inquiry into the design and utility of morphable surfaces to provide tangible support while sketching in Virtual Reality (VR). We explored various materials and structures that could enable a surface to morph. We designed and implemented the Morphace ecosystem that includes 3D printed accessories that enable handheld and desk-mounted pen-and-surface interaction for the Oculus Quest VR device. Our goal with this project is to engage the design and HCI community to open discussion on the utility of morphable surfaces for sketching in VR.
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