Abraham Hashemian



PhD Student


hashemia at sfu dot ca



Abraham is a Ph.D. stu­dent in School of Interactive Arts & Technology (SIAT) at Simon Fraser University (SFU) with a back­ground in com­puter sci­ence. He is inter­ested in UX/UI research in vir­tual, aug­mented, and mixed real­i­ties. Moreover, he is inter­ested in immer­sive game design regard­ing his knowl­edge and prior experiences.

Background: After fin­ish­ing his M.Sc. in Artificial Intelligence (AI) at 2003, Abraham taught for 12 years as a uni­ver­sity instruc­tor, while focus­ing on game design (for the first 5 years) and Holographic inter­face design (for the next 5 years) as his field of research. In 2015, he started his Ph.D., focus­ing on design­ing inter­faces for nav­i­ga­tion within vir­tual envi­ron­ments. Please check his per­sonal web­site for more details.


Concurrent locomotion and interaction in VR

Can more embodied and leaning-based interfaces help support concurrent locomotion and interaction in VR when physical walking isn't feasible? Physical walking is often considered the gold standard for VR travel whenever feasible. However, especially for larger-scale virtual travel the free-space walking areas are typically too small, thus requiring handheld controllers to navigate, which ...

Leaning-based interfaces improve ground-based VR locomotion

Hand-held VR controllers are widely available and used, however they can contribute to unwanted side-effects, such as increased cybersickness, disorientation, and cognitive load. Here, we show how a leaning-based interfaces ("HeadJoystick") can help improve user experience, usability,and performance in diverse ground-based navigation including three complementary tasks: reach-the-target, follow-th...

Embodied & Intuitive Flying for VR, Gaming, and TeleOperation

Flying has been a dream for mankind for millenia - but flying interfaces for VR, gaming, and teleoperation (e.g., drones) typically rely on cumbersome double-joystick/gamepads and do not allow for intuitive and embodied flying experiences. Here, we develop low-cost embodied flying interfaces that adapt leaning-based motion cueing paradigms thus freeing up hands for additional tasks beyond just na...

Gamified Research

Gamifying Research - Researchifying Games While traditional experimental paradigms offer tight stimulus control and repeatability, then tend to be a bit boring and removed from many real-world situations, which can limit real-world transferability of results. How can we bring together the methodological strenghs of research with the intrinsic motivation of playfulness and gaming? The ...

Lean and Elegant Motion Cueing in VR

How do we best design locomotion interfaces for VR that provide "enough" physical motion cues (vestibular/proprioceptive) while still being effective, affordable, compact, and safe? Despite amazing progress in computer graphics and VR displays, most affordable and room-sized VR locomotion interfaces provide only little physical motion cues (e.g., vestibular & proprioceptive cues). To provide...

Immersive & Embodied Teleoperation Interfaces

Developing virtual interfaces for embodied tele-operation and locomotion. How can we best design and implement an embodied telepresence system for tele-robotics, so we can safely explore remote, hard-to-reach, or potentially hazardous areas or situations? The goal of the "TeleSpider" project is to design and implement a telepresence system where users can remotely operate a robotic spid...

Motion Seats for VR

Using motion seats for enhancing locomotion and immersion in VR How can we provide a "moving experience" through VR without having to use a full-scale motion platform? Could a compact and relatively low-cost "motion seat" provide some of the same benefits, thus reducing cost, complexity, space & safety requirements? Despite considerable advances in Simulation and Virtual Real...


Kitson, A., Nguyen-Vo, T., Hashemian, A. M., Stepanova, E. R., & Riecke, B. E. (2017, November). A User Study Comparing Two Low-Cost Chair Interfaces for Embodied Virtual Locomotion [Talk]. Psychonomic Society 58th Annual Meeting, Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Hashemian, A. M., & Riecke, B. E. (2017, April 6). Rotate and Lean: Does Leaning toward the Target Direction Improves the Virtual Reality Navigation? [Poster]. Second International Workshop on Models and Representations in Spatial Cognition, Tübingen, Germany.
Kitson, A., Stepanova, E. R., Hashemian, A. M., Riecke, B. E., Nagy, G., Choo, A., & Chen, D. (2016, May 14). TeleSpider: investigating motion-cueing interfaces for control of a remote robotic spider [Project exhibition]. Consumer Virtual Reality (CVR) conference, Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Kitson, A., Hashemian, A. M., Stepanova, E. R., Kruijff, E., & Riecke, B. E. (2017). Comparing Leaning-Based Motion Cueing Interfaces for Virtual Reality Locomotion. Proceedings of IEEE Symposium on 3D User Interfaces 3DUI, 73–82. https://doi.org/10.1109/3DUI.2017.7893320
Hashemian, A. M., & Riecke, B. E. (2017). Leaning-Based 360° Interfaces: Investigating Virtual Reality Navigation Interfaces with Leaning-Based-Translation and Full-Rotation. In S. Lackey & J. Chen (Eds.), Virtual, Augmented and Mixed Reality (VAMR 2017) (Vol. 10280, pp. 15–32). Springer. https://youtu.be/7IT9EODJn3c
Kitson, A., Riecke, B. E., Hashemian, A. M., & Neustaedter, C. (2015). NaviChair: Evaluating an Embodied Interface Using a Pointing Task to Navigate Virtual Reality. Proceedings of the 3rd ACM Symposium on Spatial User Interaction, 123–126. https://doi.org/10.1145/2788940.2788956
Hashemian, A. M., Adhikari, A., Kruijff, E., Heyde, M. von der, & Riecke, B. E. (2021). Leaning-based interfaces improve ground-based VR locomotion in reach-the-target, follow-the-path, and racing tasks. IEEE Transaction on Visualization and Computer Graphics TVCG, 1–22. https://doi.org/10.1109/TVCG.2021.3131422
Riecke, B. E., Hashemian, A. M., Adhikari, A., Aguilar, I., Kruijff, E., & Heyde, M. von der. (2021). Simultaneous Locomotion and Interaction in VR: Walking > Leaning > Controller [Talk]. ICSC 2021: 8th International Conference on Spatial Cognition, Rome, Italy. https://youtu.be/jzoaBAd6gPY
Adhikari, A., Riecke, B. E., Hashemian, A. M., Nguyen-Vo, T., Kruijff, E., & Heyde, M. von der. (2021). Embodied VR Flying Improves Spatial Orientation while Reducing Cybersickness [Talk]. ICSC 2021: 8th International Conference on Spatial Cognition, Rome, Italy. https://youtu.be/FbmE4SEISWU
Hashemian, A., Lotfaliei, M., Adhikari, A., Kruijff, E., & Riecke, B. E. (2020). HeadJoystick: Improving Flying in VR using a Novel Leaning-Based Interface. IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics, 28(4), 1792–1809. https://doi.org/10.1109/TVCG.2020.3025084
Adhikari, A., Hashemian, A. M., Nguyen-Vo, T., Kruijff, E., Heyde, M. von der, & Riecke, B. E. (2021). Lean to Fly: Leaning-Based Embodied Flying can Improve Performance and User Experience in 3D Navigation. Frontiers in Virtual Reality, 2, 1–22. https://doi.org/10.3389/frvir.2021.730334