When you pet a kitten or run your fingers through a saw what do you feel? Being that these are opposite ends of the touch spectrum I hope the only similarity you can find is friction. Unless the cat is licking your face or something and their tongue is grinding away your cheek, that’s a lot of friction.
As it turns out friction is the reason we can perceive texture. It’s a big part of our sense of touch. So the magicians at Disney Research Labs decided it is time that friction should be incorporated into touch screens so we can finally feel what we are touching. Word is the next advancement is smell-o-vision.
“Touch interaction has become the standard for smartphones, tablets and even desktop computers, so designing algorithms that can convert the visual content into believable tactile sensations has immense potential for enriching the user experience,” Ivan Poupyrev, director of the Pittsburgh’s Interaction Group at Disney Research, said in a statement.
“We believe our algorithm will make it possible to render rich tactile information over visual content and that this will lead to new applications for tactile displays.”
Hit the jump for a video.