Using an Augmented Reality Device as a Distance-based Vision Aid—Promise and Limitations

1Dartmouth College 2Cardiff University

In Optometry and Vision Science, 2018

Teaser
The HoloLens creates a 3D map of the physical environment (A) and our application overlays an augmented stereoscopic view (B). The example overlay shows nearby surfaces (<2.0 m) as warm colors, and farther surfaces as cool colors (> 2.0 m). This is the red-to-blue overlay used in Experiment 2.

Abstract

For people with limited vision, wearable displays hold the potential to digitally enhance visual function. As these display technologies advance, it is important to understand their promise and limitations as vision aids. The aim of this study was to test the potential of a consumer augmented reality (AR) device for improving the functional vision of people with near-complete vision loss. We developed an AR application that translates spatial information into high-contrast visual patterns and ran two experiements to assess its efficacy to improve performance on a range of visual tasks (identifying the location, pose and gesture of a person, identifying objects, and moving around in an unfamiliar space). Our findings indicate that consumer AR devices may soon be able to support applications that improve the functional vision of users for some tasks. In our study, both artificially impaired participants and participants with near-complete vision loss performed tasks that they could not do without the AR system; however, current limitations in system performance and form factor, as well as the risk of overconfidence, will need to be overcome.

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Text Reference

Max Kinateder, Justin Gualtieri, Matt J. Dunn, Wojciech Jarosz, Xing-Dong Yang, Emily A. Cooper. Using an Augmented Reality Device as a Distance-based Vision Aid—Promise and Limitations. Optometry and Vision Science, June 2018.

BibTex Reference

@article{kinateder18using,
    author = "Kinateder, Max and Gualtieri, Justin and Dunn, Matt J. and Jarosz, Wojciech and Yang, Xing-Dong and Cooper, Emily A.",
    title = "Using an Augmented Reality Device as a Distance-based Vision Aid—Promise and Limitations",
    isbn = "1538-9235",
    Journal = "Optometry and Vision Science",
    month = "jun",
    Year = "2018",
    doi = "10.1097/OPX.0000000000001232"
}