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      Virtual Nature Environments Based on Fractal Geometry for Optimizing Restorative Effects

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      Proceedings of the 32nd International BCS Human Computer Interaction Conference (HCI)

      Human Computer Interaction Conference

      4 - 6 July 2018

      Fractals, Attention Restoration Theory, Virtual Nature, Scenery Assessment, Visual perception

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          Abstract

          Exposure to nature has been shown to have psychological benefits, such as reducing mental fatigue and stress by restoring capacity in directed attention. Moreover, these effects have been found to extend to purposefully designed, virtual representations of nature. Several constructs have been proposed that underlie beneficial characteristics of nature but these constructs have been found difficult to quantify and reproduce consistently. This has made it challenging to create optimized restorative virtual nature environments. Here we present two studies to investigate the role of a more quantifiable parameter - fractals - in the restorative effects of virtual nature. Basic nature scenes featuring trees were generated based on fractal geometry. Results from both an online study including 2D images and a lab study featuring immersive VR showed a small but consistent preference for images with a fractal dimension of 2.3. Results from psychophysiological measurements in the lab study did not show clear effects of the nature scenes on recovery from stress. We discuss the implications of these findings in the light of research towards restoration and give directions for future research.

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          Most cited references 27

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          Natural Versus Urban Scenes: Some Psychophysiological Effects

           R. Ulrich (1981)
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            The viability of crowdsourcing for survey research.

            Online contract labor portals (i.e., crowdsourcing) have recently emerged as attractive alternatives to university participant pools for the purposes of collecting survey data for behavioral research. However, prior research has not provided a thorough examination of crowdsourced data for organizational psychology research. We found that, as compared with a traditional university participant pool, crowdsourcing respondents were older, were more ethnically diverse, and had more work experience. Additionally, the reliability of the data from the crowdsourcing sample was as good as or better than the corresponding university sample. Moreover, measurement invariance generally held across these groups. We conclude that the use of these labor portals is an efficient and appropriate alternative to a university participant pool, despite small differences in personality and socially desirable responding across the samples. The risks and advantages of crowdsourcing are outlined, and an overview of practical and ethical guidelines is provided.
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              Fractal dimension of landscape silhouette outlines as a predictor of landscape preference

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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Conference
                July 2018
                July 2018
                : 1-11
                Affiliations
                [1 ] University of Twente

                The Netherlands
                Article
                10.14236/ewic/HCI2018.55
                © Almkerk et al. Published by BCS Learning and Development Ltd. Proceedings of British HCI 2018. Belfast, UK.

                This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

                Proceedings of the 32nd International BCS Human Computer Interaction Conference
                HCI
                32
                Belfast, UK
                4 - 6 July 2018
                Electronic Workshops in Computing (eWiC)
                Human Computer Interaction Conference
                Product
                Product Information: 1477-9358BCS Learning & Development
                Self URI (journal page): https://ewic.bcs.org/
                Categories
                Electronic Workshops in Computing

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