Leveraging user attention by sharing the users’ gaze can improve both collaboration and teaching. It can make complex tasks easier and decrease the time needed to complete tasks.
Sharing gaze can be done in several ways, for example by simluating avatar eye movement, highlighting objects being focused or simply by visualizing a ray from the avatar’s eyes.
For the videos below, the gaze ray visualizations can be seen from both users in the third person perspective (top-part of video), but each user can only see the other user’s ray from their perspective (bottom-part of video).
In this video, two users are collaborating in an office setting. With the help of shared gaze, users can more easily understand what the other user is talking about.
From an audience perspective (third person), it’s easier to understand the context and adds possibility to analyze the collaboration.
In this video, the user to the right is teaching the user to the left how to put together a model by utilizing shared gaze. The teacher simply looks at the next model part which the other user then picks up (using gaze grab) and places on the table according to the teacher’s instructions.
This will decrease the time needed to complete the task because there is no need to manually point with a laser pointer or describe the object - you just look at the object of interest and the other user(s) understands immediately. It also frees up your hands from doing a pointing gesture.
Shared Gaze in Groups
Another interesting take on shared gaze is how it can be used in a group setting. For example, showing aggregated gaze highlights around objects of interest could be useful for a teacher to know if students are paying attention or being able to improve presentations or business meetings by knowing the interest of the audience.