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Supporting Focus and Context Awareness in 3D Modeling Using Multi-Layered Displays

Although advances in computer technology over the past few decades have made it possible to create and render highly realistic 3D models these days, the process of creating these models has remained largely unchanged over the years. Modern 3D modeling software provide a range of tools to assist users with creating 3D models, but the process of creating models in virtual 3D space is nevertheless still challenging and cumbersome. This thesis, therefore, aims to investigate whether it is possible to support modelers more effectively by providing them with alternative combinations of hardware and software tools to improve their 3D modeling tasks. The first step towards achieving this goal has been to better understand the type of problems modelers face in using conventional 3D modeling software. To achieve this, a pilot study of novice 3D modelers, and a more comprehensive study of professional modelers were conducted. These studies resulted in identifying a range of focus and context awareness problems that modelers face in creating complex 3D models using conventional modeling software. These problems can be divided into four categories: maintaining position awareness, identifying and selecting objects or components of interest, recognizing the distance between objects or components, and realizing the relative position of objects or components. Based on the above categorization, five focus and context awareness techniques were developed for a multi-layer computer display to enable modelers to better maintain their focus and context awareness while performing 3D modeling tasks. These techniques are: object isolation, component segregation, peeling focus, slicing, and peeling focus and context. A user study was then conducted to compare the effectiveness of these focus and context awareness techniques with other tools provided by conventional 3D modeling software. The results of this study were used to further improve, and evaluate through a second study, the five focus and context awareness techniques. The two studies have demonstrated that some of these techniques are more effective in supporting 3D modeling tasks than other existing software tools.
Type of thesis
Mohd Yusof, A. (2013). Supporting Focus and Context Awareness in 3D Modeling Using Multi-Layered Displays (Thesis, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)). University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10289/7241
University of Waikato
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