Text Entry in Virtual Environments using Speech and a Midair Keyboard

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Department of Computer Science


Entering text in virtual environments can be challenging, especially without auxiliary input devices. We investigate text input in virtual reality using hand-tracking and speech. Our system visualizes users' hands in the virtual environment, allowing typing on an auto-correcting midair keyboard. It also supports speaking a sentence and then correcting errors by selecting alternative words proposed by a speech recognizer. We conducted a user study in which participants wrote sentences with and without speech. Using only the keyboard, users wrote at 11 words-per-minute at a 1.2% error rate. Speaking and correcting sentences was faster and more accurate at 28 words-per-minute and a 0.5% error rate. Participants achieved this performance despite half of sentences containing an uncommon out-of-vocabulary word (e.g. proper name). For sentences with only in-vocabulary words, performance using speech and midair keyboard corrections was faster at 36 words-per-minute with a low 0.3% error rate.

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IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics