Bridging the Uncanny: An impossible traverse?

Tinwell, Angela ORCID: 0000-0001-7573-0989 and Grimshaw, Mark (2009) Bridging the Uncanny: An impossible traverse? In: MindTrek: 13th International Academic Conference, 30 September - 2 October 2009, Finland. (Submitted)


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This paper proposes that increasing technological sophistication in the creation of realism for human-like virtual characters is matched by increasing technological discernment on the part of the viewer. One of the goals for achieving a realism that is believable for virtual characters is to overcome the Uncanny Valley where perceived eeriness or familiarity are rated against perceived human-likeness. Empirical evidence shows the uncanny can be applied to virtual characters, yet implies a more complex picture than the shape of a deep valley with a sharp gradient as depicted in Mori's original plot of the Uncanny Valley. Our results imply that: (1) perceived familiarity is dependent upon a wider range of variables other than appearance and behaviour; and (2) for realistic, human-like characters, the Uncanny Valley is better replaced with the notion of an Uncanny Wall because the Uncanny Valley, as a concept, is not fully supported by the empirical evidence but, more importantly as a standard for creating human-like realism, is an impossible traverse.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Additional Information: Paper to be presented at the 13th International Academic Conference MindTrek, 30 September - 2 October 2009. The conference website is available at
Uncontrolled Keywords: Uncanny Valley, video games, photo-realistic, characters, Emotion, computer games
Divisions: School of Creative Technologies > Games Computing and software engineering
Depositing User: Scott Wilson
Date Deposited: 26 Nov 2013 12:50
Last Modified: 05 Mar 2018 16:04

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