A Novel Multi-touch Approach for 3D Object Free Manipulation

  • Jiechang Guo
  • Yigang WangEmail author
  • Peng Du
  • Lingyun Yu
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 10582)


In the field of scientific visualization, 3D manipulation is a fundamental task for many different scientific datasets, such as particle data in physics and astronomy, fluid data in aerography, and structured data in medical science. Current researches show that large multi-touch interactive displays serve as a promising device providing numerous significant advantages for displaying and manipulating scientific data. Those benefits of direct-touch devices motivate us to use touch-based interaction techniques to explore scientific 3D data. However, manipulating object in 3D space via 2D touch input devices is challenging for precise control. Therefore, we present a novel multi-touch approach for manipulating structured objects in 3D visualization space, based on multi-touch gestures and an extra axis for the assistance. Our method supports 7-DOF manipulations. Moreover, with the help from the extra axis and depth hints, users can have better control of the interactions. We report on a user study to make comparisons between our method and standard mouse-based 2D interface. We show in this work that touch-based interactive displays can be more effective when applied to complex problems if the interactive visualizations and interactions are designed appropriately.


Direct-touch interaction 3D manipulation Multi-touch gesture 



We would like to thank Chenling Tang, Minda Chen and all the user study participants for their invaluable input. This work was supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 61502132, No. 61502130) and Key Laboratory of Complex Systems Modeling and Simulation, Ministry of Education.


  1. 1.
    Isenberg, T.: Position paper: touch interaction in scientific visualization. In: Proceedings of the Workshop on Data Exploration on Interactive Surfaces—DEXIS, pp. 24–27 (2011)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Martinet, A., Casiez, G., Grisoni, L.: The effect of DOF separation in 3D manipulation tasks with multi-touch displays. In: Proceedings of VRST10 ACM Symposium on Virtual Reality Software & Technology, pp. 111–118 (2010)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Yu, L., Svetachov, P., Isenberg, P., Everts, M.H., Isenberg, T.: FI3D: direct-touch interaction for the exploration of 3D scientific visualization spaces. IEEE Trans. Vis. Comput. Graph. 16(6), 1613–1622 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Martinet, A., Casiez, G., Grisoni, L.: The design and evaluation of 3D positioning techniques for multi-touch displays. 3D User Interfaces 30, 115–118 (2010)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Kin, K., Miller, T., Bollensdorff, B., Derose, T., Hartmann, B., Agrawala, M.: Eden: a professional multitouch tool for constructing virtual organic environments. In: Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 1343–1352 (2011)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Roblesdelatorre, G.: The importance of the sense of touch in virtual and real environments. IEEE Multimed. 13(3), 24–30 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Keefe, D.F.: Integrating visualization and interaction research to improve scientific workflows. IEEE Comput. Graph. Appl. 30(2), 8–13 (2010)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Hancock, M.S., Vernier, F.D., Wigdor, D., Carpendale, S.: Rotation and translation mechanisms for tabletop interaction. In: IEEE International Workshop on Horizontal Interactive Human-Computer Systems, Tabletop IEEE, p. 8 (2006)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Reisman, J.L., Davidson, P.L., Han, J.Y.: A screen-space formulation for 2D and 3D direct manipulation. In: ACM Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology, Victoria, DBLP, pp. 69–78 (2009)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Hancock, M., Cate, T.T., Carpendale, S.: Sticky tools: full 6DOF force-based interaction for multi-touch tables. In: ACM International Conference on Interactive Tabletops and Surfaces, pp. 133–140 (2009)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Martinet, A., Casiez, G., Grisoni, L.: Integrality and separability of multitouch interaction techniques in 3D manipulation tasks. IEEE Trans. Vis. Comput. Graph. 18(3), 369–380 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Mendes, D., Ferreira, A.: Evaluation of 3D object manipulation on multi-touch surfaces using unconstrained viewing angles. In: Campos, P., Graham, N., Jorge, J., Nunes, N., Palanque, P., Winckler, M. (eds.) INTERACT 2011. LNCS, vol. 6949, pp. 523–526. Springer, Heidelberg (2011). doi: 10.1007/978-3-642-23768-3_73 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Besançon, L., Issartel, P., Ammi, M., Isenberg, T.: Usability comparison of mouse, touch and tangible inputs for 3D data manipulation (2016)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jiechang Guo
    • 1
  • Yigang Wang
    • 1
    Email author
  • Peng Du
    • 1
  • Lingyun Yu
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Hangzhou Dianzi UniversityHangzhouChina
  2. 2.Center for Medical Imaging North East NetherlandsUniversity of Groningen, University Medical Center GroningenGroningenNetherlands

Personalised recommendations