Touch. It’s a sense with a diverse range of functions from helping us identify objects and communicate, to detecting threats to the body- both inside and out. Our sense of touch is always on, with most information being processed in our subconscious- running in the background like a computer’s operating system. Only when specific bits of information are considered important do we even become aware of it. Touch gives us the capability to react quickly and reflexively to our environment, more so than with any of our other senses.
Most virtual experiences are constructed around what you see and hear. Creating a realistic, meaningful tactile experience for that world is really about developing tools that let you feel what “lives” inside the machine. A dedicated interface that puts as much of the user’s body in direct contact with the virtual world is the first step. The second is the software for giving virtual objects and actions the appropriate feel, which can then be experienced through that interface.
Real- life touch sensory experiences happen when something touches us or we touch it. Whether it’s an object, an invisible force like gravity, pressure, or a thermal change- its perception based on physical contact. Since touch receptors are an integral part of the skin, every point on its surface is a sensor. A wearable system like our 3rdSpace & PhantomSense products uses this to its advantage- the ideal for advanced tactile realism.
Touch is more than just sensing vibrations from motors or speakers. Pressure based sensations are more important- taking you beyond vibration into the world of direct contact and unseen forces. Focusing pressure to specific areas across the entire body opens up new possibilities- like being able to experience virtual surroundings as real 3-dimensional space. Pressure based effects are difficult to create yet critical to making the most realistic, natural, and intuitive tactile experience possible.
Our 3rd Space Vest has 8 active contact points distributed across the front and back of the device. This combination lets us create a diverse range of complex pressure based effects such as ballistic impacts, contact, rumbling, and G forces, in a way that lets you physically experience the virtual space as if it were real. We use air to create a durable, light weight system that is both easy to use and comfortable for long hours of continuous use.
Integrating a tangible physical experience with your audio-visual media is our way of bringing virtual scenarios to life in an infinitely more realistic and compelling way. Your subconscious will be telling you it's real, and you’re a part of it.