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Exploring Design of Immersive Virtual Environment for Supporting Human-System Coordination
For designing large-scale products like an airplane, engaging end-users in the concept phase is difficult. However, early user evaluation is important to choose the path which fits the user's needs best. In particular, comfort related assessments are difficult to conduct with digital models that are shown on a desktop PC application. Digital Human Modelling (DHM) plays a role in postural comfort analysis, while the subjective comfort feedback still largely relied on consulting with end-users. This paper applies a human-centered design process and analyses the advantages and disadvantages of using VR prototypes for involving users during concept design. This study focused on using VR prototypes for concept selection and verification based on comfort assessment with potential end-users. The design process started with an online questionnaire for identifying the quality of the design elements (Step 1 online study). Then, alternative concepts were implemented in VR, and users evaluated these concepts via a VR headset (Step 2 Selection study). Finally, the research team redesigned the final concept and assessed it with potential users via a VR headset (Step 3 Experience study). Every design element contributed positively to the long-haul flight comfort, especially tap-basin height, storage, and facilities. The male and female participants had different preferences on posture, lighting, storage, and facilities. The final prototype showed a significantly higher comfort rate than the original prototypes. The first-person immersion in VR headsets helps to identify the nuances between concepts, thus supports better decision-making via collecting richer and more reliable user feedback to make faster and more satisfying improvements.
BACKGROUND:The Human-Centered Design methodology advocates VR prototyping, as an effective tool to evaluate concepts in a cost-efficient, time-saving way. It is the question of whether it works in the development of a product intended to increase privacy while flying. OBJECTIVE:The current study aims at the application of virtual reality on the evaluation of a new privacy bubble called PRIVA for the passenger cabin. METHODS:An interactive VR was created and aligned with the HTC VIVE headset. 40 participants took part in the experiment as well as in the post-experiment survey. RESULTS:The concept was in overall, desirable as it was perceived to be more private, comfortable, satisfactory, effective, and appealing to participants compared to the currents seat experiences. It was also perceived as more satisfactory with regards to the activities. CONCLUSIONS:The VR was effective, although there are limitations, the product seems promising and should be developed further.
Immersive Virtual Reality (VR) laparoscopy simulation is emerging to enhance the attractiveness and realism of surgical procedural training. This study analyses the usability and presence of a Virtual Operating Room (VOR) setup via user evaluation and sets out the key elements for an immersive environment during a laparoscopic procedural training. In the VOR setup, a VR headset displayed a 360-degree computer-generated Operating Room (OR) around a VR laparoscopic simulator during laparoscopy procedures. Thirty-seven surgeons and surgical trainees performed the complete cholecystectomy task in the VOR. Questionnaires (i.e., Localized Postural Discomfort scale, Questionnaire for Intuitive Use, NASA-Task Load Index, and Presence Questionnaire) followed by a semi-structured interview were used to collect the data. The participants could intuitively adapt to the VOR and were satisfied when performing their tasks (M=3.90, IQR=0.70). The participants, particularly surgical trainees, were highly engaged to accomplish the task. Despite the higher mental workload on four subscales (p < 0.05), the surgical trainees had a lower effort of learning (4 vs 3.33, p < 0.05) compared to surgeons. The participants experienced very slight discomfort in seven body segments (0.59-1.16). In addition, they expected improvements for team interaction and personalized experience within the setup. The VOR showed potential to become a useful tool in providing immersive training during laparoscopy procedure simulation based on the usability and presence noted in the study. Future developments of user interfaces, VOR environment, team interaction and personalization should result in improvements of the system.
Virtual reality (VR) training is widely used in several minimal invasive surgery (MIS) training curricula for procedural training. However, VR training in its current state lack immersive training environments, such as using head-mounted displays that is implemented in military or aviation training and even entertainment. The virtual operating room simulation setup (VORSS) is explored in this study to determine the effectiveness of immersive training in MIS. Twenty-eight surgeons and surgical trainees performed a laparoscopic cholecystectomy on the VORSS comprising of a head-mounted 360-degree realistic OR surrounding on a VR laparoscopic simulator. The VORSS replicated a full setup of instruments and surgical team-members as well as some of the distractions occurring during surgical procedures. Questionnaires were followed by semi-structured interviews to collect the data. Experts and novices found the VORSS to be intuitive and easy to use (p = 0.001). The outcome of the usability test, applying QUESI and NASA-TLX, reflected the usability of the VORSS (p < 0.05), at the cognitive level, which indicates a good sense of immersion and satisfaction, when performing the procedure within VORSS. The need for personalized experience within the setup was strongly noted from most of the participants. The VORSS for procedural training has the potential to become a useful tool to provide immersive training in MIS surgery. Further optimizing of the VORSS realism and introduction of distractors in the OR should result in an improvement of the system.
The usability now serves as a fundamental quality of a computational device, e.g. smartphone. Moreover, the smartphone has firmly embedded into our daily life as an indispensable part, so the context and style that user may interact with them are largely different from a decade ago. Nowadays, testing usability with end user has become a common sense. Thus, how valid a usability evaluation method could assess the ‘extent to which a product can be used by specified users’ (ISO 9241-11) to facilitate software design becomes an interesting question to explore.
Smartphone is nowadays the most prevalent computer system, thus a lot of attention from academia and industries has been put to evaluate its quality of use. However, Smartphone has more complex interaction modes and usage scenarios than PC and laptop. And therefore assessing its quality using a conventional usability evaluation is not sufficient. Meanwhile, the mental load serves as an acknowledged index of effort that operators have put in human-machine interaction, especially under high-demanding context. Mental load contains a set of parameters in multiple dimensions, such as primitive task performance, biological measurement(s) and subjective mental load scale, which assesses the efforts of tasks under a particular environment and operating conditions. Thus, it is suitable for evaluating complex mental work, and may indicate the use of Smartphones.