Granulated rest frames as a technique to mitigate visually-induced motion sickness and their application

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As a visual cue, rest-frames are isotropically vertical and relatively stationary to subjects; they are used to alleviate visually induced motion sickness in the virtual reality experience. However, the use of rest-frames as a visually induced motion sickness–alleviation technique poses several challenges for the user. This is primarily because the existing design is content-based, not graphics-driver-level, so it cannot be seamlessly applied to various platforms. The design also blocks some peripheral vision, sacrificing the user’s spatial-recognition ability.

This dissertation aims to understand and improve rest-frames’ design, making their use a viable technique to reduce visually induced motion sickness. This technique is graphics-driver-level, so it can run seamlessly in any environment. With this goal, the dissertation proposes and validates a novel design of rest-frames inspired by amodal completion: granulated rest-frames. A generic method to process stereoscopic videos to study user-experience is also presented. The new design implements rest-frames as visual noise with changeable settings to maintain the user’s spatial-recognition ability and provide more flexibility at the graphics-driver level.

This study finds the optimal size and sparsity of granulated rest-frames by investigating the user’s visual-search performance at different settings. It also validates the effect of granulated rest-frames in alleviating visually induced motion sickness in interactive virtual environments. The main finding is that granulated rest-frames can help first-time users adapt to a virtual environment more quickly without affecting the spatial-recognition ability of their peripheral vision. This dissertation also demonstrates the applicability of granulated rest-frames in stereoscopic videos in a preliminary study, as part of which a generic method to investigate users’ reactions to 360° videos is proposed. The dissertation also offers an experimental design to explore the utilization of granulated rest-frames’ effects in general-purpose interaction techniques in a future study.





Cao, Zekun (2022). Granulated rest frames as a technique to mitigate visually-induced motion sickness and their application. Dissertation, Duke University. Retrieved from


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