By Eric Craypo
The more computing becomes integrated into the activities of daily life, the more people rely on visual information from digital displays to accomplish their personal and professional goals. This project aims to use perceptual science to improve a family of emerging display technologies called smartglasses that are wearable devices inspired by the form factor and functionality of eyeglasses but incorporating state-of-the-art digital displays and optics. Smartglasses present an opportunity to expand the impact and use of computing, but they also pose a number of challenges with respect to the quality of the visual imagery and the integration with normal vision. Overcoming these challenges is important, because technological advances in display systems such as smartglasses can have broad impact on the public good by facilitating access to digital information for people with both typical and impaired vision. This project will focus on developing perceptual insights to advance the development of emerging visual technologies that are useful, effective, and affordable for people across a broad range of individual differences in vision. The research will have additional impact through close integration with outreach and teaching activities focused on training the next generation of vision scientists.
This project will exploit behavioral, psychophysical, and computational approaches to develop insights that advance both our basic and applied understanding of human visual perception. Customized laboratory display and optical equipment will be used in conjunction with state-of- the-art wearable systems to study how people perceive natural and augmented visual stimuli. Guidelines will be developed for how best to design emerging visual display systems that merge digital information with natural vision; these guidelines will encompass populations of people with both typical and impaired vision. The research activities will also advance our fundamental knowledge of human vision by focusing on the perception of complex, binocular stimuli; thus, project outcomes will contribute insights that hasten the development of next-generation technologies while deepening our basic understanding of how humans sense and perceive the natural world.
Research summary by Emily Cooper and NSF. Read more about the NSF Faculty Early Career Development Grant.