A critique of Haptic Interaction Design in a Historical Context - What's the Matter with Touch Now?

Simone Gumtau


Examining some of the historical and philosophical frameworks, this paper seeks to contextualize increased research activity around haptic interaction. Embracing the idea that mind and body may not be separated, a general urge for embodiment and added sensuality in Human Computer Interaction research is emerging. This points to a culturally constructed history of the senses, which in turn influences research and design aims.

Through an analysis of haptic designs, some of these research aims and design parameters are grouped and then mapped onto three different philosophical models of touch: the physical-sensory model, the psychological-humanistic model, and the field model (Weber, 1990). Including various modes and senses in the interaction process gives the impression that this will become more "natural" and "intuitive". We will explore what the haptic senses can specifically add to digital interaction and communication, depending on the philosophical standpoint of the designer/researcher.



Haptics; philosophy; embodiment; perception; senses; interaction design

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7238/a.v0i12.1596

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