Manipulation aid for virtual objects using dynamic constraints between object faces

Yoshifumi Kitamura, Amy Yee, Fumio Kishino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A method of creating a natural user interface for the manipulation of objects in a virtual environment is described. The colliding faces of complex objects are identified dynamically in real time and used as constraints on the movement of the objects. There are no constraints on the movement of the operator's hand, only on the freedom of placement of the objects in virtual space; these constraints are visually indicated to the operator. The method requires no special hardware such as force feedback mechanisms. The user interface is based on a magnet metaphor and enables the operator to manipulate objects more accurately and efficiently. Methods of assisting the manipulation of the virtual objects are described and their effectiveness is tested in training sessions with experimental subjects. An application example involving the manipulation of virtual toy blocks is described.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18-30
Number of pages13
JournalElectronics and Communications in Japan, Part III: Fundamental Electronic Science (English translation of Denshi Tsushin Gakkai Ronbunshi)
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1997 May
Externally publishedYes


  • Collision detection
  • DOF constraints
  • Manipulation aid
  • Polyhedral representation
  • Virtual environment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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