BlocklyXR: An Interactive Extended Reality Toolkit for Digital Storytelling



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Traditional in-app virtual reality (VR)/augmented reality (AR) applications pose a challenge of reaching users due to their dependency on operating systems (Android, iOS). Besides, it is difficult for general users to create their own VR/AR applications and foster their creative ideas without advanced programming skills. This paper addresses these issues by proposing an interactive extended reality toolkit, named BlocklyXR. The objective of this research is to provide general users with a visual programming environment to build an extended reality application for digital storytelling. The contextual design was generated from real-world map data retrieved from Mapbox GL. ThreeJS was used for setting up, rendering 3D environments, and controlling animations. A block-based programming approach was adapted to let users design their own story. The capability of BlocklyXR was illustrated with a use case where users were able to replicate the existing PalmitoAR utilizing the block-based authoring toolkit with fewer efforts in programming. The technology acceptance model was used to evaluate the adoption and use of the interactive extended reality toolkit. The findings showed that visual design and task technology fit had significantly positive effects on user motivation factors (perceived ease of use and perceived usefulness). In turn, perceived usefulness had statistically significant and positive effects on intention to use, while there was no significant impact of perceived ease of use on intention to use. Study implications and future research directions are discussed.



Blockly, Digital Storytelling, Extended Reality, GIS, Remote Sensing, Visual Programming, Computational Thinking, Technology Acceptance Model


Jung, K., Nguyen, V.T., & Lee, J. (2021). BlocklyXR: An interactive extended reality toolkit for digital storytelling. Applied Sciences, 11(3), 1073.