Changing a Visual Perspective into that of a Child

In this research we propose a wearable suit that virtually realizes a child’s embodiment and experience while preserving the user’s interaction manner. Virtualized child’s embodiment through our own body will provide opportunities to feel and understand a child’s perception and recognition, allowing to encounter inspirations in daily life and to evaluate products and spaces such as hospitals, public facilities and homes from the aspect of universal design. Understanding and perceiving the world from a child’s view is a very important key not only to design products and architectures but also to remind staffs who are close to children such as hospitals and kindergartens. In this study, we propose a novel wearable suit called CHILDHOOD that virtually realizes a child’s eye and hand movements by attaching a viewpoint translator and hand exoskeletons.

The viewpoint translator presents a child’s point of view by using a pan-tilt stereo camera attached at the waist and a head-mounted display. The distance of the camera lenses is adjustable, so that the system could reproduce children’s pupillary distance. The user are able to control POV by their own head behavior, allowing them to explore existing environments from a new perspective in realtime. The passive hand exoskeletons simulate a child’s tiny grasping motion by using multiple quadric crank mechanisms and a child-size rubber hand. We analyzed a grasping motion using motion capture system and designed the exoskeleton. It has no actuators and sensors, which is manipulated passively by the user’s actions. The users, therefore, can receive complete and real-time haptic feedback.

We demonstrated the system at science museums, a hospital, and a nursing school as an assistive educational tool.  Also, we conducted a feasibility study in University of Tsukuba Hospital in which medical doctors are asked to wear the device and walk around the hospital ward. Studies indicated that the developed system successfully provides a child’s view and grasping and demonstrated its potential for assisting product and spatial design. CHILDHOOD enables us to understand how children see and interact with the world.



Jun Nishida, Soichiro Matsuda, Mika Oki, Hikaru Takatori, Kosuke Sato and Kenji Suzuki. 2019. Egocentric Small-person Experience by Changing a Visual Perspective. ACM SIGCHI 2019 Papers & Interactivity (PDF)

Jun Nishida, Hikaru Takatori, Kosuke Sato and Kenji Suzuki, “CHILDHOOD: Wearable Suit for Augmented Child Experience”, SIGGRAPH 2015 Emerging Technologies & Posters, USA, Aug. 9-13, 2015 (PDF)

Jun Nishida, Hikaru Takatori, Kosuke Sato and Kenji Suzuki, “CHILDHOOD: Wearable Suit for Augmented Child Experience”, Virtual Reality International Conference, France, Apr. 8-12, 2015 (PDF)