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Research results
Ph.D de

Group : Human-Centered Computing

A Design Framework for User Interfaces of 3D Audio Production Tools

Starts on 01/04/2013
Advisor : HUOT, Stéphane

Funding : Convention industrielle de formation par la recherche
Affiliation : Université Paris-Sud
Laboratory : LRI IN-SITU

Defended on 02/10/2017, committee :
Rapporteurs :
- Thierry Duval, Professor, IMT Atlantique,
- Sylvain Marchand, Professeur, Université La Rochelle,

- Emmanuel Pietrigra, Directeur de Recherche, Inria Saclay,
- Florent Berthaut, Maître de Conférences, Université Lille-3,

Directeur de thèse :
- Stéphane Huot, Directeur de Recherche, Inria Lille-Nord Europe

Co-directeur de thèse :
- Brian FG Katz, Directeur de Recherche, CNRS

Research activities :

Abstract :
There has been a significant interest in providing immersive listening experiences for a variety of applications, and recent improvements in audio production have provided the capability for 3D audio practitioners to produce realistic and imaginative immersive auditory scenes. Even though technologies to reproduce 3D audio content are becoming readily available for consumers, producing and authoring this type of content is difficult due to the variety of rendering techniques, perceptual considerations, and limitations of available user interfaces. This thesis examines these issues through the development of a framework of design spaces that classifies how 3D audio objects can be created and manipulated from two different viewpoints : Morphological Analysis of 3D Audio Methods and Practices and Interaction Design. By gathering ethnographic data on tools, methods, and practices of 3D audio practitioners, overviewing spatial perception related to 3D audio, and conducting a morphological analysis on related objects of interest (3D audio objects, interactive parameters, and rendering techniques), we identified the tasks required to produce 3D audio content and how 3D audio objects can be created and manipulated. This work provided the dimensions of two design spaces that identify the interactive spatial parameters of audio objects by their recording and rendering methods, describing how user interfaces provide visual feedback and control the interactive parameters. Lastly, we designed several interaction techniques for 3D audio authoring and studied their performance and usability according to different characteristics of input and mapping methods (multiplexing, integrality, directness). We observed performance differences when creating and editing audio trajectories, suggesting that increasing the directness of the mapping technique improves performance and that a balance between separability and integrality of input methods can result into a satisfactory trade-off between user performance and cost of equipment. This study provided results that inform designers on what they might expect in terms of usability when designing input and mapping methods for 3D audio trajectory authoring tasks. From these viewpoints, we proposed design criteria required for user interfaces for 3D audio user production that developed and improved the framework of design spaces. We believe this framework and the results of our studies could help designers better account for important dimensions in the design process, analyze functionalities in current tools, and improve the usability of user interfaces for 3D audio production tools.