REVEL by Disney ResearchPosted 10:33 am on Monday, August 27th, 2012 by James Martinez
When someone says Disney, you tend to think theme parks, games and animated movies, not tactile technology. However, Disney Research has been hard at work developing REVEL, a reverse electrovibration technology. This is next level tech that will add a new layer to modern touchscreen devices like tablets and smart phones, as well as anything else you can touch.
How does it work? First you have to attach an electrostatic signal generator to your body. The objects you touch will have an insulator and electrode, and you’ll have to share a common ground. When you come in contact with an object on the same electrical plane, the low level field can alter to create friction. Essentially when you touch the object, REVEL will vary the signal frequency, and different tactile experiences can be created.
This has several potential applications. You could add a new level to augmented reality to your tablet or smart phone. Say you are looking at a picture of a fruit or animal, when you touch the screen, REVEL would mimic the texture of that object. Kind of cool and creepy, I know. One great application would be for the seeing impaired with the creation of the tactile GPS. The user could program a route on a smart phone and then follow the electronic brick road. The applications for this could be endless.
James likes racing games, puzzle games, and building computers. By day he works as a systems administrator, by night he is a writer. He likes to be comical and open to new ideas and technology.