Microsoft 3D research goes touchy feely

Microsoft Research

Microsoft Research demonstrate actuator which allow feeling virtual objects in 3D space

Now if this is not indicating where 3D virtualisation is going, I don’t know what  is. We found this article very interesting and want to hear your ideas for Virtual Reality.

Microsoft Research has demonstrated a new mechanically-actuated hand-held controllers that render the shape of virtual objects through physical shape displacement, enabling users to feel 3D surfaces, textures, and forces that match the visual rendering.

They have published the results of their investigations in the Proceedings of the 29th Annual Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology and demonstrate two such controllers, NormalTouch and TextureTouch, which are tracked in 3D and produce spatially-registered haptic feedback to a user’s finger.

NormalTouch haptically renders object surfaces and provides force feedback using a tiltable and extrudable platform. TextureTouch renders the shape of virtual objects including detailed surface structure through a 4×4 matrix of actuated pins.

By moving the  controllers around while keeping your  finger on the actuated platform, users are able to obtain the impression of a much larger 3D shape.

MSR found their controllers significantly increases the accuracy of VR interaction compared to the two de-facto standards in Virtual Reality controllers: device vibration and visual feedback only.


NormalTouch and TextureTouch: High-fidelity 3D Haptic Shape Rendering on Handheld Virtual Reality Controllers