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Motivation and Research Challenges

Situation and Motivation


Despite a lot of research in the area of virtual reality (VR) only few recommendations and no standards were developed on how to design and implement easy-to-use, ergonomic 3D user interfaces. Quite a few 3D-widgets exist but are not wide spread and standardized due to toolkit-dependence and previously reduced availability of expensive VR-hardware. Only with the rapid development of processor technology and 3D graphics hardware for standard PCs, interactive three-dimensional applications become available for low-end equipment and everyday users. Especially with the development of the internet many 3D-formats and toolkits evolve, which support new application areas making use of 3D graphics, like for example Design, Product Presentations and E-Commerce, Virtual Shops, or Entertainment.

Three-dimensional interfaces stand for an added value compared to WIMP-based interfaces in certain areas. The development of 3D user interfaces and virtual environments in general is time-consuming, troublesome and hard due to the lack of experiences, standards and authoring tools. The multitude of 3D-formats and the failure of VRML as a true standard 3D web format are other problems to overcome. The XML-based successor X3D seems to be far more promising as a future standard.

Research Challenges