Making Hand Tremors

In making hand tremors, we hope to accomplish user embodiment of a common affliction among the elderly. However, there are numerous technical and research challenges in completing this task. From a technical point of view, the sizing and shape of the hands must be appropriate for a VR environment. Since the user must pick up objects, the hands must be sized accordingly. The shape of the hands will be gloves that are culturally symbolic of the legend. This means making new models that are accurately designed. Additionally, the physics of the hand tremor must be coded in order to make it realistic. The tremor could easily be mistaken for a glitch if not programmed properly. In addition to technical challenges, based on the research of Birgit Nierula, Matteo Martini, Marta Matamala-Gomez, Mel Slater, and Maria V Sanchez-Vives, embodiment in a virtual environment isn’t a guarantee. “Seeing one’s own body has been reported to have analgesic properties. Analgesia has also been described when seeing an embodied virtual body colocated with the real one. However, there is controversy regarding whether this effect holds true when seeing an illusory-owned body part.” Achieving virtual body ownership of an accurately depicted hand tremor will continue to be an obstacle in building the virtual experience.

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Birgit Nierula, Matteo Martini, Marta Matamala-Gomez, Mel Slater, Maria V Sanchez-Vives (2017)  Seeing an Embodied Virtual Hand is Analgesic Contingent on Colocation. The journal of pain : official journal of the American Pain Society Jan.