Docs and Links
For reference, the DRS paper titled “Towards Accessible Spatial Audio Interfaces: Revisiting the Auditory Torch” can be found here.
The literature review sheet can be found here.
The presentation made at the IDC research club meeting can be viewed here.
Any future updates to this project will also be linked here.
I’ve built a very basic sample application demonstrating some aspects of the auditory torch.
You can find the APK file here (should work on most Android phones, you’ll need to allow 3rd party APKs though).
Your phone controls a literal torch that shines literal light on 6 auditory icon squares in front of you.
Whenever the torch’s laser beam intersects a square, the square lights up. The icon’s audio is played from its spatial location, and you can hear the next nearest neighbour faintly as well.
Haptic feedback is provided whenever the torch enters or leaves a square, so you could try navigating the space without looking at the screen, and there’s a button to turn off the visual feedback.
This interaction method of using a literal torch is just one of the many ways in which the torch metaphor can be implemented. This is a very primitive demo and a lot of work has to be done. I’m sharing it here to help give a better sense of the idea.
In case you have any questions or feedback, please do get in touch!
(Massive screenshot of the application below)