Mr Christopher Feakes

Job: Part Time Lecturer

Faculty: Technology

School/department: Department of Media Technology

Research group(s): Interactive and Media Technologies (IMT) and Virtual Reality Assisted Living (ViRAL)

Address: De Montfort University, The Gateway, Leicester, LE1 9BH

T: +44(0)116 257 7485

E: cfeakes@dmu.ac.uk

W: dmu.ac.uk

 

Personal profile

Chris Feakes is a part time lecturer and research student in the faculty of technology, teaching a variety of modules mainly based in audio/music production and computer music. In addition to his PhD project investigating the use of head movement in auditory localisation and virtual reality, Chris has also taken part in a number of Frontrunner Projects and assisted research into audio and haptic interaction.

Publications and outputs 

  • Audio Tactile Maps (ATM) System for the Exploration of Digital Heritage Buildings by Visually-impaired Individuals - First Prototype and Preliminary Evaluation
    Audio Tactile Maps (ATM) System for the Exploration of Digital Heritage Buildings by Visually-impaired Individuals - First Prototype and Preliminary Evaluation O'Sullivan, Liam; Picinali, Lorenzo; Feakes, C.; Cawthorne, Douglas Navigation within historic spaces requires analysis of a variety of acoustic, proprioceptive and tactile cues; a task that is well-developed in many visually-impaired individuals but for which sighted individuals rely almost entirely on vision. For the visually-impaired, the creation of a cognitive map of a space can be a long process for which the individual may repeat various paths numerous times. While this action is typically performed by the individual on-site, it is of some interest to investigate to what degree this task can be performed off-site using a virtual simulator. We propose a tactile map navigation system with interactive auditory display. The system is based on a paper tactile map upon which the user’s hands are tracked. Audio feedback provides; (i) information on user-selected map features, (ii) dynamic navigation information as the hand is moved, (iii) guidance on how to reach the location of one hand (arrival point) from the location of the other hand (departure point) and (iv) additional interactive 3D-audio cues useful for navigation. This paper presents an overview of the initial technical development stage, reporting observations from preliminary evaluations with a blind individual. The system will be beneficial to visually impaired visitors to heritage sites; we describe one such site which is being used to further assess our prototype. P.I. Dr. Lorenzo Piccinali, Faculty of Technology, DMU
  • VR interactive environments for the blind: Preliminary comparative studies.
    VR interactive environments for the blind: Preliminary comparative studies. Picinali, Lorenzo; Etherington, A.; Feakes, C.; Lloyd, T.

Click here to view a full listing of Christopher Feakes' publications and outputs.

Research interests/expertise

Human computer interaction, binaural audio recording and reproduction, assistive technologies, comparative perceptual studies of sighted and visually impaired individuals.

Areas of teaching

Audio/Music recording and production, Computer Music.

Qualifications

BSc (hons.) Music technology & Innovation.

Courses taught

ENGT5229, TECH2035, TECH2004.

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