Creation of a Virtual Reality Grocery Store for the
Rehabilitation of Head Injury Patients
and Zack Schilling
Often times the most tragic part of a head injury is the patient’s loss of independence and ability
to perform everyday task
s. The purpose of rehabilitation is to help the patient reclaim some of this lost
cognitive function and take back control of his/her life. The purpose of this project is to create a virtual
reality grocery store that will facilitate in the recovery of pat
ients’ ability to recognize patterns, group
logically, and make simple comparisons amongst different items in a grocery store. This game will also
connect to a central server that will allow therapists to monitor progress as well as adjust settings for
ficulty and change scenarios.
In order to create the shopping environment, we designed a grocery store aisle using 3D Studio
Max. We also designed the various groceries using the 3D Studio Max toolset. In order to script the actual
game, we use the Virto
ols Integrated Development Environment. The scripting is accomplished by
importing the 3D models in .VMO format from Max into Virtools. We also have set up several cameras
to view different sections of the aisle. Since the patients may not have the mental
capacity to move freely,
we need to create extremely simplified controls. The entire game operates on a two button system. One
button cycles through views of the shopping cart, the freezer, and the two shelves, the other selects the
item under the highligh
ting torus which shifts from item to item every 3 seconds, to allow patients plenty
of time to hit the enter button, and brings that item into the shopping cart.
The optimal end result is a collection of scenarios and difficulty levels. The different lev
necessary because as patients improve they need to be continuously challenged in order for interest and
enthusiasm to remain. Scenarios may include what to buy for breakfast, lunch for two, or a large dinner.
Difficulty levels will be created with
the addition of prices and a budget. After the user has collected a
total of five items, he or she will be asked if he or she is done shopping and wishes to go to the checkout.
The program will then review the items the patient has purchased and categoriz
e them into acceptable, ok,
and unacceptable items. They will receive two points for each acceptable item, one point for each OK
item, and zero points for each unacceptable item. This value, along with a list of the five items, will be
sent off to the se
rver using a PHP script to parse URL variables in an HTTP GET request. The patient
Class of 2008, Computer Engineering, Clarkson University, Honors Program, Prof. Conry, Advisor
Class of 2008, Computer Engineering, Clarkson University, Honors Program, Prof. Conry, Adv
will then receive a message saying he or she has done a good job if there are fewer than three
unacceptable items and a prompt asking if they want to try again if there are
three or more.
This project will join a pre
existing host of games already written in Java that also aid the patient
in pattern recognition amongst other skills. Much like our game will, these games already integrate into
the existing server side SQL, XML
and Java interface for managing patient information and progress.