Gaming, News, Nvidia, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Researchers using eye-tracking to exploit saccadic suppression in VR

Story and Image Source: RoadToVR

At Nvidia’s GTC 2018 conference, researchers from Nvidia, Adobe, and Stony Brook University showed off a new system for redirected walking. This redirected walking uses quirks of human vision to get a user to think they’re walking in a larger VR space than the room they’re in would allow.

The way this system works is by exploiting saccadic suppression. Saccades refer to rapid eye movements, and saccadic suppression refers to the period of blindness we experience when this happens, which can be counted in milliseconds. With high-end eye-tracking technology, this saccadic suppression can be detected and used to rotate the scene when the user is blind. This will naturally encourage them to rotate slightly, and the change will be so subtle that it’s imperceptible and won’t cause any nausea or motion sickness.

Another bonus of this feature is that it’s all calculated in real-time, and can account for real-time changes in the environment. The researchers claim that it can be used to help users avoid moving objects, like pets or other people in the same space.

More details beyond this will have to wait until the full paper is released later this year, but for now, RoadToVR has kindly shared a presentation video which we’ll be embedding below.

This is a truly fascinating advancement in the world of VR, and could one day help compensate for smaller room scale environments without sacrificing the scale of VR environments. Imagine being able to walk around a world like Skyrim with no noticeable interruptions in movement in a 10 x 10 room. This technology might just make that possible.

Comment below and let us know: do you think this technology will help solve the problem of movement in VR?

  • Rob

    Exciting stuff, question is, whats the performance impact if its calculated in GPU, and what is the accuracy when people walk at a more natural pace.. Looking forward to seeing the development of this