Real-Time Tracking of Visually Attended Objects in Virtual Environments and Its Application to LOD

Sungkil Lee, G. J. Kim, Seungmoon Choi
Virtual Reality Laboratory in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at POSTECH, San 31, Hyoja-dong, Nam-gu, Pohang, Gyungbuk, 790-784, Republic of Korea
Visualization and Computer Graphics, IEEE Transactions on, Vol. 15, No. 1. (30 May 2008), pp. 6-19


   title={Real-time tracking of visually attended objects in virtual environments and its application to lod},

   author={Lee, S. and Kim, G.J. and Choi, S.},

   journal={IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics},




   publisher={Published by the IEEE Computer Society}


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This paper presents a real-time framework for computationally tracking objects visually attended by the user while navigating in interactive virtual environments. In addition to the conventional bottom-up (stimulus-driven) saliency map, the proposed framework uses top-down (goal-directed) contexts inferred from the user’s spatial and temporal behaviors, and identifies the most plausibly attended objects among candidates in the object saliency map. The computational framework was implemented using GPU, exhibiting high computational performance adequate for interactive virtual environments. A user experiment was also conducted to evaluate the prediction accuracy of the tracking framework by comparing objects regarded as visually attended by the framework to actual human gaze collected with an eye tracker. The results indicated that the accuracy was in the level well supported by the theory of human cognition for visually identifying single and multiple attentive targets, especially owing to the addition of top-down contextual information. Finally, we demonstrate how the visual attention tracking framework can be applied to managing the level of details in virtual environments, without any hardware for head or eye tracking.
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