Markus Leyrer

Alumni of the Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action
Alumni of the Group Perception and Action in Virtual Environments
Alumni of the Research Group Body and Space perception

Main Focus

With the recent progress in virtual reality technology and the increase in computational power, virtual reality is now a very useful tool for a large variety of applications in very diverse domains. The possibility to easily provide users with sophisticated immersive virtual environments delivered via large screen displays or head-mounted displays has turned virtual reality into a Swiss army knife for applications ranging from training, prototyping, design, medical rehabilitation and entertainment to research in human perception, scientific visualization and more. However, to be effective, many of these applications require that the displayed virtual environments are visually perceived as a replica of the real world. Thus, an important question is how do we perceive space in virtual environments and what factors contribute to space perception, specifically in virtual environments.

In my research I am mainly interested in distance (and space) perception in virtual environments and focus on specific factors which can influence our perception of space. Such factors are for example eye height, visual cues, posture in relation to gravity and others. A better understanding of these factors may allow us to better understand space perception in general and to use this knowledge to change perceived space in virtual environments.

Especially, changing the perceived space can become very important: Consider flying in an air plane where physical space is usally very restricted (at least in the economy class). With this research it might be possible to provide passengers with the virtual illusion of more space, which ultimately can lead to more comfort. This comfort/change of perception research is  conducted in the context of the EU-Project VR-Hyperspace (), which is is a 7th Framework Programme funded under the Aeronautics and Air Transport (AAT) workprogramme.

Data for accepted manuscripts in raw format (.spss Dataformat):

Eye height for perceiving egocentric distances can be determined by non-visual, body-based cues.

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(For furhter explanation of variable declaration as far not apparent from the variable name, feel free to contact me anytime.)

Curriculum Vitae


2014 - ongoing Post-Doctoral Researcher

Space and Body Perception Group (Betty J. Mohler), Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Tübingen, Germany.

2011 - 2014 Ph.D. Candidate
supervised by Dr. Betty Mohler & Dr. Sally Linkenauger.
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action (Dept. Head: Heinrich H. Buelthoff), Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Tübingen, Germany.

2008 – 2011 Master Student

Media and Communication Informatics - Reutlingen University, Germany.

Graduation with distinction.

2005 – 2008 Bachelor Student

Media and Communication Informatics - Reutlingen University, Germany.

1995 – 2004 High School Student

Graf-Eberhard-Gymnasium, Bad Urach.

Work Experience

2008 – 2010 Reutlingen University, Reutlingen, Germany

Teaching in the computer graphics laboratory. Technical assistance and administration of the VRlab. Administration of Student laboratories, support of students, licence administration, server administration.

2007 Forschungs- und Innovationszentrum BMW Group, München, Germany.

Development and projectmanagment of a webbased system for internal order tracking of rapid prototyping parts.

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