42016 - Virtual Reality, Immersive Interaction, Usability and Presence (RVA)

  • Type: Elective
  • Semester: S3
  • ECTS: 5
  • Teaching Points: 12
  • Offer: Annual
  • Responsible Unit: CS
  • Responsible: Carles Andujar
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: Level A and B subjects. Basic knowledge on geometrical models and computer assisted geometrical design.

The main goal is to train the student on the main techniques involved in Virtual Reality, the interaction with virtual environments (VEs) and on the evaluation of the usability of VR systems. The student should acquire specific knowledge on VR architectures and devices, algorithms for interactive navigation and simulation in VEs, visual and haptic interaction techniques and usability and presence evaluation.

1. Definition and architecture of a VR system
2. VR simulation software. Interactive navigation algorithms
3. Fundamentals of stereo vision
  • Stereo pairs generation
4. Technologies for the visual immersion
  • projection systems
  • head-mounted displays
  • Auto-stereo displays
  • Tiled displays
  • Others
5. Technologies enabling direct interaction
  • Position and orientation sensors
  • Gesture sensing
6. Technologies for haptic interaction: effector devices
7. Immersive interaction paradigms
  • Algorithms for the tactile interaction. Colision detection and response
  • Interaction systems for controlling the application
  • Interaction through locomotion. Accelerations
8. Virtual objects with behaviour
9. Evaluation systems. Usability
  • Human factors: perception, cognitive aspects, presence
  • Experiments. Physiological measures, observation
  • Evaluation methods. Design of usability tests. Usability laboratories.
  • Data analysis. A posteriori usability improvement
  • Applications

Students’ work will be divided into:
  • Theoretical lessons: students will be presented with the master lines for each topic, the most relevant ideas, and the connection between them and other speciality topics. The complementary materials will be specified, and will usually be from magazine publications.
  • Personal work: studying, deepening in the covered topics with complementary materials and meetings with the teacher.
  • Practical projects: done in labs, supervised during some time, but mainly consisting of the implementation of diverse algorithms

Students will be evaluated on their practical exercises and projects, solving of problems and presentations of complementary materials.


As there are no books that gather the state of the question, the basic resources will be articles published in magazines, which teachers will provide the students with. Access to the magazines in the UPC library will be a fundamental tool.