Abstract

In indoor environments, having a view from a window plays an important role in human physical and psychological well-being—particularly if the view contains natural elements. In places where physical windows are absent or the view is highly artifact-dominated, virtual windows can potentially play a beneficial role. The current paper presents a research experiment on the efficacy of three monocular depth cues, that is, movement parallax, blur, and occlusion, in engendering a window-like “see-through experience” using projected photorealistic scenes. Results indicate that all three cues have a significant main effect on the viewer's see-through experience, with movement parallax yielding the greatest effect size. The effects of the remaining two cues are largely qualified by their interactions with each other and with movement parallax. These results provide a first step in identifying and testing the perceptual elements that are essential in creating a convincing virtual window.

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