Chapter 12: Cross-Platform Validation Issues
Handbook of Driving Simulation for Engineering, Medicine, and Psychology
Cross-Platform Validation Issues
Hamish Jamson, University of Leeds
The Problem. A driving simulator is simply an apparatus to aid in the investigation of driver behavior, to consider engineering design solutions, or to facilitate driver training. Its attraction is its capacity to allow such studies to take place under safe and controllable conditions. However, driving simulators vary wildly in terms of their sophistication and therefore their individual ability to faithfully recreate the complexities of the driving environment, making it challenging for the simulator user to select the appropriate system for the task in hand. Role of Driving Simulators. The choice of a particular technical specification and configuration of a driving simulator should be dependent on the nature of the driving task required, be that shaped by research objectives or training needs. As a rule of thumb, the greater the investment in a facility, the greater its ability to realistically mimic a wide range of driving tasks. As such, driving simulators are often classified according to investment cost. However, very limited research has been performed on what the cost-benefit structure of simulator investment really is. This chapter attempts to address some of these issues. Key Results of Driving Simulator Studies. First, the theory of perception in a virtual environment is reviewed: the closed-loop feedback through the driver’s visual, vestibular, and auditory sensory systems. Scenarios and Dependent Variables. Next, the practical implications of the design choices forced upon driving simulator developers is considered and how those choices may manifest themselves in terms of the quality of the overall simulation and validity of the driving data extracted from it. Platform Specificity and Equipment Limitations. Finally, the role of varying classifications of driving simulators is discussed in terms of scenario realism and simulator validity. Conclusions are drawn as to what level of driving simulator is most suitable in a range of typical applications.
Driving Simulator Characteristics, Design and Classification, System Selection, Cost-Benefit Analysis
• An attempt is made to classify and compare typical driving simulator platforms and their underlying characteristics, with respect as to how perception of driving in a simulator is affected by this classification.
• Consideration is given to both driving simulator utility (faithfulness to the driving task) and usability (ease of configuration).
• The role of simulator validity in the selection of the appropriate system is discussed based on the individual research/training requirements of the task in hand.
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