Rotational tracking

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See also: Tracking and Positional Tracking

Rotational tracking is a term used to describe how a piece of hardware determines how tilted something is. There are three different ways that an object can rotate, we call each of these ways a degrees of freedom, and you can track any number of degrees of freedom. The three rotational degrees of freedom are:

  • Pitch – Tilting backward and forward, like a plane ascending or descending
  • Yaw – Left and right movement, like a plane turning left or right while remaining level
  • Roll – Clockwise or counter-clockwise movement, like a plane banking to make a turn

In order to get an accurate idea of exactly how an object is oriented, all three types of rotation have to be measured. Traditionally this would be done using devices called IMUs implanted into an object.

Rotational tracking is a vital technology used not only in VR and AR HMDs but also in Input Devices.