Hi My name is Tony Morelli and I’m a graduate student in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Nevada in Reno and I’m here to present our research on developing exercise games that can help users with visual impairments exercise.
Exercising not only makes us happy......
But exercise is also a powerful tool in the fight against obesity. Childhood obesity is finally recognized as a national problem as recent studies show that obesity is reducing the life expectancy of our children as obese children develop diabetes and heart problems at a much younger age as their non obese peers. The recently started letsmove campaign by Michelle Obama seeks to reduce obesity by promoting healthier eating habits and increasing the participation of children in physical activity
However, some children -despite having healthy eating habits- are unable to exercise. Individuals with disabilities, and particularly those with visual impairments in have lower levels of inactivity and consequently much higher levels of obesity than their sighted peers. Some of the barriers to physical activity that they face include:
Reliance on others for exercising. To engage in activities such as cycling or running they rely upon a sighted guide to help them out, which may not always be available.
Safety, Individuals with VI have a much higher chance of getting injured while exercising.
Especially children with visual impairments, have a fear of being made fun of while participating in adapted physical activities.
Exergames are video games that use physical activity as input to the game, and in recent years these games have gained tremendous popularity. Recent studies show that exergames may yield levels of active energy expenditure that are considered healthy. We identified that exergames have some attractive properties that could overcome the barriers to physical activity that individuals with VI face: e.g. you don’t need other people to play exergames and because you exercise in place the risk of injury is minimal.
Unfortunately exergames are not accessible to users with visual impairments because they rely upon being able to perceive visual cues that indicate what to do when. For example a combat game like eye toy kinetic uses visual cues (orbs) that indicates what to do (punch / kick) and when (when they appear). Without vision such games are impossible to play.
So our research boiled down to the question of how can we play exergames using feedback from non visual modalities, e.g., haptic and audio.
So we selected an exergame (the tennis game from Wii Sports) that is relatively easy to learn to play and which in studies has proven to engage their users into levels of active energy expenditure that are healthy. Wii Tennis is a game that can be played with a motion sensing controller called the wii remote using motions that resemble the way tennis is played.
But because Wii sports is closed source we created an PC version of this game called VI Tennis, which implements the gameplay of Wii Tennis and which can be played with a Wii remote through a blue tooth connection. A benefit of using a Wii remote is its capability to provide vibrotactile feedback.
Wii tennis provides lots of feedback in primarily visual and audio modalities and it is important to identify those cues that the player absolutely needs to perceive in order to play the game because converting all visual information into audio or tactile feedback is not feasible due to the smaller spatial and temporal resolutions of these modalities. We therefore make a distinction between primary and secondary cues. Primary cues are cues that the player must perceive as it requires a particular response from the user for example sound of the ball bouncing or the visualization of the ball indicates to the player to get ready to return the ball. Secondary cues are ........
So we identified
Developmental sports camp blind children
Quotes from kids
Some of the issues that we are investigating currently are: 1) how effective are multimodal motion instructions? what is hte best way to encode motion instructions using tactile feedback. The wii remote is limited in its ability to provide tactile feedback. 2) how accurate is the motion capturing
VI-Tennis: a Vibrotactile/Audio Exergame for Players who are Visually Impaired
VI-Tennis: a Vibrotactile/audio based Exergame for Users who are Visually Impaired Tony Morelli, John Foley, Luis Columna, Lauren Lieberman, Eelke Folmer
participants’ characteristics <ul><li>All children totally blind </li></ul><ul><li>13 children </li></ul>Human Computer Interaction Research University of Nevada, Reno
Hypothesis <ul><li>H1: Players who are blind achieve the same performance with tactile/audio cues as with audio cues </li></ul><ul><li>H2: Players who are blind achieve the same levels of active energy expenditure with tactile/audio as with audio cues </li></ul>Human Computer Interaction Research University of Nevada, Reno
User Study Human Computer Interaction Research University of Nevada, Reno Average Active Energy Expenditure Kcal/Kg/Min T1 T2 Mean Audio 3.56(1.1) 4.49(2.0) 3.99(1.0) Audio/Haptic 4.70(2.3) 3.47(1.0) 4.03(1.8)
User Study Human Computer Interaction Research University of Nevada, Reno Time Spent in MVPA Minutes T1 T2 Mean Audio 9.71(0.5) 9.50(0.8) 9.62(0.7) Audio/Haptic 9.83(0.4) 9.71(0.5) 9.77(0.4)
User Study Human Computer Interaction Research University of Nevada, Reno
“ WIth sounds you have to pay more attention but with vibrations I just feel it and just hit.” “ It is really good to play with friends or whoever!” User Feedback