Browse Prior Art Database

Cyberspace Navigation Techniques

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000113487D
Original Publication Date: 1994-Aug-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-27
Document File: 2 page(s) / 71K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Becker, CH: AUTHOR

Abstract

Disclosed are several novel schemes that allow for easy and intuitive navigation through a Virtual Reality Cyberspace environment.

This text was extracted from an ASCII text file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 52% of the total text.

Cyberspace Navigation Techniques

      Disclosed are several novel schemes that allow for easy and
intuitive navigation through a Virtual Reality Cyberspace
environment.

      As processing hardware gets faster and cheaper, Virtual Reality
(VR) interfaces will become more and more common.  While the actual
VR environment will vary depending on the application, one of the
more popular environmental conceptions is that of Cyberspace.  First
described in William Gibson's novel _Neuromancer_, Cyberspace is a
large space filled with various data and computational entities, each
represented as a 3D icon.  Through VR, the user is given the illusion
of movement through this space.  Accessing a database might consist
of moving to it's icon representation and touching it.

      While this is an interesting (and fun) user interaction
paradigm, there exists the possibility that, in a large Cyberspace
domain, the user could get lost.  Granted, a user could be provided
with the x, y, and z coordinates of any particular point, but
location data in numerical format is easy to forget and/or
mis-remember.  Herein are are disclosed some simple and intuitive
approaches to maintaining one's bearings while navigating through a
Cyberspace:

o   For 2D Cyberspace environments, a colored "floor" would provide
    an easy indication of where one was (for future reference) and a
    simple method of determining the direction one should move to get
    where one wants to be.  For example, if I am currently in a
    bluish area and wish to move to an entity that I remember being
    located in a greenish area, I look at the floor, determine the
    direction in which the blue floor becomes greener, and proceed to
    move in that direction.  The actual coloring could be any of a
    number of mappings of, say, the RGB cube to a 2D surface.

o   Another method appropriate to a 2D Cyberspace environment would
    be to leave a trail.  This could be a simple glowi...