Keywords: Virtual Reality, Ontology, Conferencing, IVC, Installation Theory, Activity Grid
Remote conferencing for collaboration is a fast-growing field. Virtual Reality applications are experiencing a surge in popularity as they afford a feeling of co-presence and ‘togetherness’ that video-conferencing cannot. But VR environments for conferencing are not fully mature yet in terms of space, and even less so in terms of the human activities they are supposed to facilitate. Moreover, for researchers, designers and practitioners from various backgrounds working on and in these spaces, a rigorous, shared language for conferencing activities in virtual environments to facilitate the exchange between different stakeholders does not exist as yet. In this paper, we therefore propose a simple, clear method for the development of a human-centered ontology for VR-conferencing, combining existing methodological protocols with Activity Theory and Installation Theory. We then present the first iteration of the ontology focusing specifically on human activity which we developed based on a recent 5-week conference with experts from academia and industry that took place in a 3D VR-environment.