A Low-Parameter Rendering Algorithm for Fine Textures

David Arthur Burns*, Roberta L. Klatzky, Michael A. Peshkin, J. Edward Colgate

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper introduces a novel rendering algorithm for virtual textures, specifically those with characteristic length scales below 1 mm. By leveraging the relatively lossy mode of human tactile perception at this length scale, a virtual texture with wide-band spectral characteristics can be reduced to a spatial sequence of single-frequency texels, where each frequency is pulled stochastically from a distribution. A psychophysical study was conducted to demonstrate that, below a limiting physical texel length, virtual textures defined by identical frequency distributions are perceptually indiscriminable. Additionally, an exploratory study mapped the distribution parameters of the texel-based rendering to spectral characteristics of perceptually similar multi-frequency virtual textures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-61
Number of pages5
JournalIEEE Transactions on Haptics
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2022


  • Texture rendering
  • haptic codec
  • surface haptics
  • tactile data compression

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Science Applications


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