Virtual environments can simulate haptic, or hands-on, interactions with virtual objects. There are many efficient, physically-based models for simulating a specific media type, such as fluid volumes and deformable and rigid bodies. However, combining these often heterogeneous algorithms in the same virtual world with different media types is a complex task.
In a paper presented at the 2011 IEEE Virtual Reality Conference (VR 2011), researchers from France’s National Institute for Research in Computer Science and Control propose the first haptic rendering technique for simulating and interacting with multistate media, in real time, and with six degrees-of-freedom (6-DoF) haptic feedback.
"‘Tap, Squeeze, and Stir’ the Virtual World: Touching the Different States of Matter through 6-DoF Haptic Interaction" is available with all the VR 2011 papers in the Computer Society Digital Library, free to CSDL subscribers and IEEE Computer Society members.