Virtual Reality Headsets - A Theoretical and Pragmatic Approach: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Virtual Reality Headsets - A Theoretical and Pragmatic Approach

1st Edition

By Philippe Fuchs

CRC Press

200 pages

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pub: 2017-02-20
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The purpose of virtual reality is to make possible a sensorimotor and cognitive activity for a user in a digitally created artificial world. Recent advances in computer technology have led to a new generation of VR devices such as VR headsets. Accordingly, virtual reality poses many new scientific challenges for researchers and professionals.

The aim of this book, a manual meant for both designers and users of virtual reality, is to present the current state of knowledge on the use of VR headsets in the most complete way possible. The book is divided into 13 chapters. The objective of the first chapter is to give an introduction to VR and clarify its scope. The next chapter presents a theoretical approach to virtual reality through our Immersion and Interaction methodology also known as "3I² model’’. Then, a chapter about human senses is necessary to understand the sensorimotor immersion, especially vision. These chapters are followed by several chapters which present the different visual interfaces and the VR headsets currently available on the market. These devices can impart comfort and health problems due to sensorimotor discrepancies. A chapter is devoted to these problems, followed by a chapter that gives a detailed discussion of methods and 32 solutions to dispel, or at least to decrease, VR sickness. The following three chapters present different VR applications that use VR headsets (behavioural sciences, industrial uses and Digital Art) and the final chapter provides conclusions and discusses future VR challenges.


"Prof. Philippe Fuchs is a true world-class expert in VR and its relationship with human perception.

The recent resurgence of virtual reality by the massive investment of Facebook and Google has created an unprecedented interest in virtual reality in the public imagination especially for HMD based VR. The problem is that this new generation of VR enthusiast do not have a deep knowledge of the impact of VR on human perception. These include nausea, disorientation, and the simulator syndrome where hand-eye coordination can be altered by long exposure to poorly designed VR experience resulting in potential accidents which could lead to liabilities. This is why this book is important as it will review what is known about VR and its influence on human perception and then describes in practical terms how to minimize those effects. Most likely this book will become the must read in this field for anyone who is serious about designing HMD hardware or VR software that are truly compatible with human perception."

Dr. Pierre Boulanger, Professor and director of the Advanced Man-Machine Interface Laboratory, University of Alberta, Canada

"… It is […] essential to present, as clearly as possible, VR concepts, to explain the operating principles of […] new VR headsets and to study their use for understanding both the opportunities and the risks. Unfortunately, there was a missing link between these articles for the general public and communications in journals or at scientific conferences for experts, whether industrial or academic. It is to fill this gap that Philippe Fuchs has decided to write this book. It fully describes the concepts, modes, uses and ways to avoid discomfort and possible faintness. I am betting that this book will meet with success."

Pascal Guitton, Professor of Computer Science at the University of Bordeaux, Founding Member and Président of the French National Association of Virtual Reality (2009–2011) and Scientific Director of Inria (2010–2014).

Table of Contents

Part I A theoretical and pragmatic approach for VR headsets

1 Introduction and challenges

2 Concepts of virtual reality

2.1 Definitions of virtual reality

2.2 Fundamental approach for immersion and interaction

2.3 Immersion and presence

3 Human senses

3.1 Introduction

3.2 Vision

3.3 Cutaneous sensitivity

3.4 Proprioception

4 Visual interfaces

4.1 Introduction

4.2 Processes for the visual perception of the 3D space

4.3 Visual interfaces with fixed support

4.4 Stereoscopic restitution of vision

5 VR headsets

5.1 Introduction

5.2 Different types of VR headset

5.3 The design of optical system

5.4 Display screens

5.5 Head tracking sensor

5.6 The ergonomic design

6 Interfaces used with VR headsets

6.1 Introduction

6.2 Tracked handheld controllers

6.3 1D treadmill and omnidirectional (2D) treadmill

6.4 Motion simulator

7 Functional and technical characteristics of VR headsets

7.1 Introduction

7.2 Main features

7.3 Technical characteristics of VR headsets

7.4 Conclusion

8 Comfort and health

8.1 Comfort and health issues

8.2 Introduction to sensorimotor discrepancies

8.3 Taxonomy of sensorimotor discrepancies

8.4 Controlling actions

8.5 Psychological problems induced by virtual environments

8.6 Optical and ergonomic constraints

9 Recommendations and solutions

9.1 Observational VBPs

9.2 “Unreal observational’’ VBPs

9.3 Navigation VBPs

9.4 Manipulation VBPs

9.5 Analysis grid for the 32 solutions

9.6 Adapting to the virtual environment

9.7 Safety rules

9.8 Conclusions

Part II VR headset applications

10 Introduction to applications utilising VR headsets

10.1 VR applications for all age groups

10.2 Professional applications

11 Behavioural lab experiments

11.1 How VR headsets change the VR landscape

11.2 Walking though virtual apertures

11.3 Conclusion

12 Industrial use of VR headsets

12.1 Introduction

12.2 Driving Simulation (DS) and Virtual Reality (VR)

12.3 Automotive and aerospace VR applications

12.4 Simulation sickness (VRISE)

12.5 Space and size perception (scale 1 perception)

13 Creating digital art installations with VR headsets

13.1 VR headsets in artistic creation

13.2 A method to create with a VR headset

13.3 Conclusion and future directions

14 Conclusion and perspectives

14.1 Conclusion

14.2 Perspectives


About the Author

Philippe Fuchs is professor at Mines ParisTech engineering school (Paris), and leader of their "Virtual Reality & Augmented Reality" team. The field of his research is the theoretical approach of VR and industrial applications. The team’s lines of research focus mainly on human "behavioural interfacing" in a virtual (or mixed real/virtual) world, by making judicious use of a person’s natural behaviour on sensory motor and mental levels. Their methodology for designing a VR system has been extended on the technical and psychological levels thanks to collaboration undertaken this year with ergonomists and psychologists. The team’s lines of research focus on visual interfaces, especially VR headsets and stereoscopic vision.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
COMPUTERS / Computer Graphics
COMPUTERS / Programming / Games