Developing a user-centered accessible virtual reality video environment for severe visual disabilities
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AbstractWe address a timely issue of accessibility for visual information through the means of videos. Using emerging technologies (Head Mounted Virtual Reality Displays) and a user-centred design approach, we provide people with severe visual disabilities with a bespoke platform for accessing and viewing videos. We report on newly created test methods for measuring acuity within virtual spaces and reactions of impaired individuals, which informed our platform's design, to inform similar designs and allow testing and refinement for ecological and external validity. A prototype software for accessible virtual reality video viewing is presented, with a subsequent user evaluation to test the software, and a newer virtual reality head mounted display to determine usability while measuring how visually impaired users utilize elements in a virtual environment. We give guidance, based on empirical evidence, and advocate that although VR technologies are currently primarily targeted at a generic audience (gaming and entertainment), they can and should be further developed as assistive tools that enable independent living and increase the quality of life for those with disabilities, and specifically severe visual impairments.
CitationWeir, K., Loizides, F., Nahar, V., Aggoun, A. and Pollard, A. (2021) Developing a user-centered accessible virtual reality video environment for severe visual disabilities. Journal on Technology and Persons with Disabilities, 9: pp. 35-53.
PublisherCSUN Center on Disabilities
JournalJournal on Technology and Persons with Disabilities
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/4.0/