Empathy and Idea Generation

The paper explores the ideation and design of a Virtual Reality (VR) proof-of-concept controller for rehabilitation of users with limited physical mobility (upper-limb disability). An existing tracker solution is used to map input (actions and movements) in VR. The main challenge was integrating some of the default functionalities existing in current commercial VR controllers, while providing an empathic setup and a use-case for disability rehabilitation, as well as keeping the controller compact, lightweight, and handheld. The prototyping process followed a human-centred explorative design idea generation. Only limited functionality of existing commercial controllers was maintained, with the feasibility and readiness for implementing additional functionalities to use the controller with existing applications and future use cases. An experiment was performed to investigate the usability of the system and the effectiveness and reliability of the controller in empathic re-mapping of real-life disability to VR.