Assessing the Use of Cognitive Resources in Virtual Reality
Due to system limitations, interactions in virtual environments are often unnatural and this may impact performance. During learning, unnatural interactions draw from a finite pool of cognitive resources, meaning that those resources cannot be used for a concurrent, possibly more important task. Because users typically have primary objectives to accomplish in the virtual world, we argue that interaction techniques and other system design choices should account for task compatibility. We use a dual-task paradigm to study resource usage during locomotion tasks varying in their similarity to real-world locomotion. In one experiment, unnatural locomotion interfaces required additional spatial resources compared to natural movements. Some participants used unique strategies unlikely in traditional dual-task studies, possibly due to the high level of immersion.
KeywordsVirtual reality dual-task paradigm working memory locomotion cognitive resources user interfaces
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