Entries - Tag = actuatedpixels

[Week 3 - Post 2] - Actuated Pixels - Updated Version

Sigurd Soerensen - Tue 10 March 2020, 8:33 pm
Modified: Tue 31 March 2020, 3:33 pm

See the concept poster here: actuated pixels

Actuated pixels' (AP) is inspired by the interactive, seemingly tangible holograms from Marvel's Iron Man and conceptualized based on the InForce project developed by the Tangible Media Lab.

An apparent issue with our modern-day everyday touch devices that many a sci-fi universe has solved is the ability to reach out to grasp and feel digital elements with our hands. Take the smartphone, for example. These devices can be drastically limiting to vision-impaired users as many of them are dependent on software such as text-to-speech, or similar, to use the phone.

AP creates physical elevations behind its digital counterpart, providing a sense of depth and various touch sensations based on the type of element that the user interacts with through hydraulics and electro-tactile feedback. Use cases could be as simple as braille text for the visually impaired to browse the internet, but even more interestingly, its application for navigational purposes.

Ed is vision impaired and reliant on his white cane to navigate. Ed was recently introduced to the new AP Phone and is excited to give it a go. Ed finds google maps by reading the braille text on his screen and immediately feels a map forming under his fingertips. He can sense the buildings on his left, the park and river on his right and the pavement he stands on. Ed notices an elevated wave moving towards him on the screen, realizing it's a person walking that the camera has translated into actuated feedback.

Using his phone to feel what others can see has provided Ed with valuable new opportunities. Now Ed can find bus departures by reading braille text and navigate there using elevated real-time maps, making his everyday activities much more accessible.

week3 actuatedpixels actuated update

[Week 2 - Post 1] - Actuated Pixels

Sigurd Soerensen - Mon 2 March 2020, 11:11 am
Modified: Tue 31 March 2020, 3:34 pm

See the concept poster here: Actuated Pixels.pdf

Actuated pixels' (AP) takes on the sci-fi concept of Iron Man's floating holograms and glass-based touch screens and combines them with recent prototypes in haptic interaction, such as the inForce concept developed by the Tangible Media Lab.


A noticeable issue with modern touch technology that sci-fi often don't have is the ability to reach out and touch the information in front of their person. Looking to our everyday life technology, it is mostly limited to flat 2D screens that offer little to none sense of physical realism upon touching the pixels on the screen. This issue is ever more present for vision-impaired or blind users who require additional assistive software such as speech interfaces to interact with the same technology most of us see as integral to our everyday life.

AP makes use of micro-actuators that pushes on a flexible screen to create an elevated area where its digital counterpart is located, such as text, braille (text for visually impaired users) or a button, allowing the user to see and touch the element simultaneously. In this way, developers can elevate their design to include how users not only see their front-end but also how the information should feel like on touch. With that said, AP's technology is not limited to screens only as it could easily be repurposed into other areas such as sensing electric wiring in walls or handheld devices allowing blind people to navigate streets more easily.

The playfulness of AP comes from the added dimension of sensing information using your fingertips and through allowing digitally generated physical representations that take shape of interface metaphors that are familiar to the user. AP can allow for a novel way of interacting with information that may very well become the new normal for a wide range of users.

actuatedpixels actuated touch tangible neumorphism week2