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The Role of Geographical Slant in Virtual Environment Navigation

MPS-Authors
http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons83928

Steck,  SD
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons84087

Mochnatzki,  HF
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons84072

Mallot,  HA
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Steck, S., Mochnatzki, H., & Mallot, H. (2003). The Role of Geographical Slant in Virtual Environment Navigation. In Spatial Cognition III: Routes and Navigation, Human Memory and Learning, Spatial Representation and Spatial Learning (pp. 62-76). Berlin, Germany: Springer.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-DDEE-C
Abstract
We investigatedthe role of geographical slant in simple navigation andspatial memory tasks, using an outdoor virtual environment. The whole environment couldb e slantedb y an angle of 4◦. Subjects could interact with the virtual environment by pedaling with force-feedback on a bicycle simulator (translation) or by hitting buttons (discrete rotations in 60◦ steps). After memory acquisition, spatial knowledge was accessed by three tasks: (i) pointing from various positions to the learnedgoals; (ii) choosing the more elevatedof two landmarks from memory; (iii) drawing a sketch map of the environment. The number of navigation errors (wrong motion decisions with respect to the goal) was significantly reducedin the slantedcond itions. Furthermore, we foundthat subjects were able to point to currently invisible targets in virtual environments. Adding a geographical slant improves this performance. We conclude that geographical slant plays a role either in the construction of a spatial memory, or in its readout, or in both.