Game Development Reference
In-Depth Information
Figure 7.8 Pinch Glove binary command glove from Fakespace Labs. (Illustration: Fakespace Labs, with
outlines of the hand, making it possible to track it and to recognise the position of
its fingers. These works must facilitate gestural communication between man and the
machine (Heap, 1995).
In conclusion, there still is not a wide range of datagloves to choose from. Very
few companies have started selling these gloves, as compared to the other standard
virtual reality products like head-mounted displays and trackers. The limited size of
the market is likely slow down the development of this product more than the technical
problems. The main technical problem is finding a measurement principle that makes
it possible to provide stability in measurement time and reliability of the results. On
the face of it, these technical questions seem less complex to resolve for the datagloves
than for other behavioural interfaces.
In virtual reality, it is possible to encounter all the standard control devices, used to
send commands to the virtual world or to the system managing it. We refer to them
as command (manual 1 ) interface . With respect to our definitions, we do not include
them in the Behavioural Interfaces developed for virtual reality, because, a priori, they
do not use natural sensorimotor behaviour of man. It is rather symbolic orders that
are sent. Amongst these command interfaces are the 2D mouse, 3D mouse, stylus,
joystick, etc.
Some of these command interfaces have been specially developed for virtual envi-
ronments. This is the case with 3Dmice, whichwere first used in CAD for manipulation
in a virtual environment. Some of the command interfaces have been improved by tac-
tile feedback or force feedback systems. We shall discuss this in the corresponding
chapter, except the special case of DigiHaptic that is mainly used as a 3D mouse with
force feedback (see the corresponding paragraph further down). Most of these inter-
faces are very simple and very well known. We shall therefore not elaborate further
on them, except for the 3D mouse and the command interfaces that are specially
1 A few non-manual command interfaces are presented briefly at the end of the chapter.
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