Effects of 2D Geometric Transformations on Visual Memory

Heidi Lam, Ronald A. Rensink, and Tamara Munzner
Proceedings of Applied Perception in Graphics and Visualization (APGV 2006), 119-126, 2006

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In order to provide well-grounded guidelines for interface design, we systematically examined the effects of 2D geometric transformations and background grids on visual memory. We studied scaling, rotation, rectangular fisheye, and polar fisheye transformations.  Based on response time and accuracy results, we found a no-cost­ zone for each transformation type within which performance is unaffected. Results indicated that scaling had no effect down to at least 20% reduction.  Rotation had a no-cost zone of up to 45 degrees, after which the response time increased to 5.4 s from the 3.4 s baseline without significant drop in accuracy.  Interestingly, polar fisheye transformations had less effect on accuracy than their rectangular counterparts.  The presence of grids extended these zones and significantly improved accuracy in all but the fisheye polar transformations.  Our results therefore provided guidance on the types and levels of nonlinear transformations that could be used without affecting performance, and provided insights into the roles of transformations and grids on visual memory.


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Heidi Lam
Last modified: Sun Aug 3 09:43:39 PDT 2008