Hagedorn, Benjamin; Döllner, Jürgen
it - Information Technology
Navigation represents a fundamental interaction technique for 3D virtual environments (3DVEs) – it enables users to explore the virtual world and to interact with its objects. For this, effective navigation techniques are required that take into account users and their goals. They also should prevent common problems of 3D navigation, such as an intricate camera control or “getting-lost” situations due to incoherent and confusing camera views. Smart navigation aims at this category of navigation techniques, it represents a special type of smart interaction and, thus, an essential element of smart graphics. This article presents the conceptual building blocks of smart navigation for 3DVEs and describes a navigation technique that allows for specifying navigation commands by sketches and gestures: Users sketch their navigation intentions on top of the perspective projection of the 3D scene, the system interprets these sketches regarding the affected scene geometry, as well as the spatial and temporal context. Based on this interpretation, navigation activities are derived and automatically performed. By providing assistance and automation, the smart navigation approach can substantially simplify user interfaces for 3DVEs and, thus, represents an essential component for novel applications of 3DVEs, e.g., based on touch-sensitive displays.