Videos with embedded text have been widely used in the past and the text in the videos usually contained valuable information. However, it was difficult for people to fully understand the text in videos displayed on smartphones due to obstructions such as color conflicts between letters and the moving background. Adjustments to texts that would support the human visual system, such as changes to brightness and color contrast, increased legibility of text, and taking into account the phantom illumination (PI) illusion (the optical illusion that increases the perception of brightness in a certain area), should be able to improve peoples’ ability to read text in augmented reality (AR) applications on smartphones. The researcher created a text presentation style implementing the PI illusion, using solid white text on a 50% transparent black billboard with a black-white shading PI illusion at the internal edge. An experiment was conducted to verify whether the text presentation style could improve reading performance. The experiment showed that the PI illusion was unable to improve legibility of text in AR applications on smartphones. However, the data suggested that, in some cases, certain participants, especially from some specific major groups, have difficulties text reading when the text is presented using the standard text presentation style without the enhancement of the PI illusion.


Visual Illusion, Visual Perception, Human Visual Perception, Augmented Reality, Text, Textual Data, Presentation Strategies

Date of this Version



Computer Graphics Technology

Department Head

Marvin Sarapin

ReprintPermission.pdf (83 kB)
Permission to reprint images from Dr. Donald D. Hoffman

Month of Graduation


Year of Graduation



Master of Science

Head of Graduate Program

Craig L. Miller

Advisor 1 or Chair of Committee

David C. Whittinghill

Committee Member 1

Mihaela Vorvoreanu

Committee Member 2

James Mohler