Artefact One – Settlement Layouts

Settlement layouts.

This experiment is looking at how people react to different building layouts. I have made two 3D “villages”, each with a different street plan. Both use the same set of free models found at this site and the same terrain generated by Terragen, so the only difference is how they are arranged.

The villages are presented as Shockwave files, which will need the latest Shockwave version installed (Director 11.5 unfortunately has no backwards comparability option available). To view them, do the following:

  1. Download the and extract 3D Villages zip file or go to this site here.
  2. In each folder there is a loading file, the shockwave file, and a html file. Open in the html file in your browser.
  3. If a message appears saying your Shockwave player is out of date, follow the instructions to update it or download it from the Adobe website (unlike the Flash player, this can be done without having to close or restart your browser and is a quick install).
  4. Once the movie has loaded, use the up and down arrow keys to move backwards and forwards and the left and right keys to turn. You cannot turn whilst moving. If the movie does not respond to the keys, click on the movie once to focus the browser on it (this is a mac-only bug as far as I can tell).
  5. The playback has deliberately been set at a slow rate to compensate for no collision detection. It is not to do with your computer (mac users may wish to set the 3D Render to “hardware” by using the right-click menu).

When you first open the movies, you begin in these positions (Village One on the left, and Village Two on the right):

As this experiment is investigating how the layout of a place affects a person’s inclination to stay and look around, I wish to know the following for each village (there is no set limit to how many times you can play the movies):-

  • which one were you more interested in exploring? (those who may be unable to open the 3D can still answer this question by using the pictures above)
  • which one did you spend the most time navigating?
  • what your route was through each Village? (this only requires giving directions as “left” and “right. For those who would like to take the time, I have top-down views of both Village One and Village Two for you to draw your route on).
  • highlight to read after you’ve been through Village One at least 3 times – how long and how many run-throughs did it take for you to realise there was a side-road about half way down the street?

7 thoughts on “Artefact One – Settlement Layouts

  1. I’d be more interested in exploring the second one.

    I spent the most time exploring village two.

    Village 1: Straight ’till the end then a U-turn back to the turn and a right through the turn.

    Village 2: right all the way along that road, then a left, right, left, left and a right.

    I ran into the side exit on my first go.

  2. Village two was far more interesting because it had all these little twists and turns; I spent much more time exploring village two than village one. In fact, I stopped exploring village one after one run through when I found out there was only one side-road. Village two had a slightly confusing layout where I almost got lost, though.

    Here were the routes I had through the villages; purple came after red, I used a different colour to differentiate a bit more.

    I spotted the side-road the first time, although it was more of a matter of luck than anything. One thing I did found slightly annoying about village two was the row of houses on the far right; they seemed a bit too disconnected.

  3. I was much more interested in navigating the second village.
    I spent more time in the first, attempting to figure out the “rules” for the virtual world. However, less of this time was navigation than was in the second.
    My route through the first village was merely straight forward, looking around as I did, with a brief glance down the left-facing lane. In the second, I immediately began by following some of the paths in the hills, then returned to the village, in which my navigation was more of a meandering. I spent much more time off the beaten path in the second and was interested to see how the paths fit together.
    I saw the side street on my first run-through.

  4. Sorry I took so long, Shockwave doesn’t seem to work on Linux, I got caught up on that. I’ll answer the question not requiring the model.
    The Second one interests me the most, it is the one I am more interested in exploring.
    Again, I apologize I can’t be of more help, I didn’t think to check if operating system would effect the ability to view the artifacts.

  5. -I was more interested in exploring village one. Village 2 seemed a bit too complex to me, and confused me quite a bit when navigating through it.

    -I spent the most time navigating through Village 2, and I did like the many different routes I could take.

    -I took a left turn in village 1, and circled around village 2.

    – I actually never noticed that, even going through it 3 times.

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