Modeling endpoint distribution of pointing selection tasks in virtual reality environments

Difeng Yu, Hai Ning Liang, Xueshi Lu, Kaixuan Fan, Barrett Ens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Citations (Scopus)


Understanding the endpoint distribution of pointing selection tasks can reveal the underlying patterns on how users tend to acquire a target, which is one of the most essential and pervasive tasks in interactive systems. It could further aid designers to create new graphical user interfaces and interaction techniques that are optimized for accuracy, efficiency, and ease of use. Previous research has explored the modeling of endpoint distribution outside of virtual reality (VR) systems that have shown to be useful in predicting selection accuracy and guide the design of new interactive techniques. This work aims at developing an endpoint distribution of selection tasks for VR systems which has resulted in EDModel, a novel model that can be used to predict endpoint distribution of pointing selection tasks in VR environments. The development of EDModel is based on two users studies that have explored how factors such as target size, movement amplitude, and target depth affect the endpoint distribution. The model is built from the collected data and its generalizability is subsequently tested in complex scenarios with more relaxed conditions. Three applications of EDModel inspired by previous research are evaluated to show the broad applicability and usefulness of the model: Correcting the bias in Fitts's law, predicting selection accuracy, and enhancing pointing selection techniques. Overall, EDModel can achieve high prediction accuracy and can be adapted to different types of applications in VR.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3356544
JournalACM Transactions on Graphics
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2019


  • Endpoint distribution
  • Error prediction
  • Fitts's Law
  • Selection modeling
  • Target selection


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