Thursday, February 12, 2015

Plugging away--getting better at Breaker

I'm still getting better at Breaker.  It's pretty awesome.  I've still been beating the game with regularity--just about every time that I play the game.  I seem to have broke through a wall--or that's at least the perception.

I had a really strange sensation when I began playing Breaker today.  There seemed to be some weird rivalry going on between my two eyes.  It seemed like for a moment that my brain couldn't decide which eye was dominant, and what I was seeing was split--like I was seeing the input from the perspective of two different people simultaneously.  It was confusing, but thankfully it didn't last.

Just now when I played I had some perceptual differences. One is that the paddle seemed absolutely huge.  I'm pretty sure that's a perceptual change.  Nothing in the program changed.  I changed.  Also, the amount of compensating that I do is decreasing.  By compensation, I mean this: Before when I would try to hit the ball, in some areas, I would have to hit the ball with the paddle off to the side so that it would appear to me as though I was hitting the ball with nothing. I have to do significantly less fudging.  Also, my accuracy is becoming way better.  It's great.  Because I perceive the paddle to be so much larger now, it feels as though I'm using a much larger portion of my fields.  Like, there is a much larger amount of space that I'm aware of which I have to try and hit the ball.  The paddle is much larger, and now it's way easier to hit, and to hit the ball with different amounts of deliberate angle.

Apparently the paddle is supposed to appear to be really large.

The other day I brought my laptop and Oculus Rift over to a friend's house.  The reason is that she has a small child (three year old) with strabismus.  I wanted to see how he would respond to the Oculus Rift.  He was a really high energy and boy-like three year old, but when I put the Rift on his head, he stayed still, and he seemed to be impressed.  But he had difficulty holding on the HDM, and using the mouse.  It was also a little difficult to communicate with him.  The result?  I think three years is a bit too young for Diplopia.

However, I offered to give the mother a try, so that she could see what her son was doing.  I was explaining the objective of the game to her and asked her if she could see the paddle.  She said no.  Then I moved the mouse around a bit, and then she exclaimed 'ohhh, so that's the paddle?  It's so close!'  She didn't notice the paddle because, apparently for people who have normal stereoscopic vision, the paddle in Breaker is so close that it's hard to notice.

I told her to try and close her right eye, and then the left eye.  She noticed that closing the right eye made the paddle disappear, and that closing the left eye made the ball disappear.  As I explained to her that this is how the game works, she emitted an 'ahhh' of apprehension.  She said that the game looked really cool.

So yeah, as the vision improves to the point of proper binocular function, it seems that the paddle gets bigger and bigger.  That's certainly seems to be true in my case.

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