Human cognitive processes in wayfinding may differ depending on the time taken to accept visual information in environments. This study investigated users’ wayfinding processes using eye-tracking experiments, simulating a complex cultural space to analyze human visual movements in the perception and the cognitive processes through visual perception responses. The experiment set-up consisted of several paths in COEX Mall, Seoul—from the entrance of the shopping mall Starfield to the Star Hall Library to the COEX Exhibition Hall—using visual stimuli created by virtual reality (four stimuli and a total of 60 seconds stimulation time). The participants in the environment were 24 undergraduate or graduate students, with an average age of 24.8 years. Participants’ visual perception processes were analyzed in terms of the clarity and the recognition of spatial information and the activation of gaze fixation on spatial information. That is, the analysis of the visual perception process was performed by extracting “conscious gaze perspective” data comprising more than 50 consecutive 200 ms continuous gaze fixations; “visual understanding perspective” data were also extracted for more than 300 ms of continuous gaze fixation. The results show that the methods for analyzing the gaze data may vary in terms of processing, analysis, and scope of the data depending on the purpose of the virtual reality experiments. Further, they demonstrate the importance of what purpose statements are given to the subject during the experiment and the possibility of a technical approach being used for the interpretation of spatial information.
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