3D Contour Perception for Flow Visualization


One of the most challenging problems in data visualization is the perception of 3D flow fields because judging the orientation of 3D paths is perceptually difficult. It is hypothesized that perception of the orientations of streamlines in space can greatly benefit from stereoscopic depth cues and motion parallax. In addition, because stereoscopic depth perception is a super-acuity and relies on such factors as small-scale stereoscopic disparity gradient based on texture, stereoscopic depth judgments will be exceptionally sensitive to display quality. In conventional displays, the aliasing of pixels gives completely spurious texture information to the mechanisms of stereoscopic depth perception. We carried out a study to evaluate the importance of 3D cues in perceiving the orientation of curved contours. The result showed that stereo and motion cues are essential to perceiving the orientation of 3D lines. If, however, the contours are rendered as shaded tubes, good orientation information is available even without stereo or motion depth cues.

Publication Date


Journal or Conference Title

Applied perception in graphics and visualization (APGV)




ACM International Conference Proceeding Series



Conference Date

Jul 30 - Aug 3, 2006

Publisher Place

Boston, MA, USA


Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)


Document Type

Conference Proceeding