4G Goggles Delivers the Perception of Touch

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Researchers developed a pair of goggles with 4D functionality, allowing users access to tactile sensations by moving objects on a screen, according a new study published on February 8, 2018.

A team of researchers at UC San Diego and San Diego State University developed a pair of 4-D goggles. The device was developed by a brain mapping study, which integrates sight and touch of a looming object. This helped understand perceptual and neural mechanisms of multisensory integration.

They also made this device available for entertainment purposes such as movies, music, games, and VR. It helps in the delivery of immersive multisensory effects near the face and enhances the sense of presence.

“We perceive and interact with the world around us through multiple senses in daily life. Though an approaching object may generate visual, auditory, and tactile signals in an observer, these must be picked apart from the rest of world, originally colorfully described by William James as a ‘blooming buzzing confusion.’ To detect and avoid impending threats, it is essential to integrate and analyze multisensory looming signals across space and time and to determine whether they originate from the same sources.” Said Hung, lead author of the study.

Subjects were made to view a looming ball and an air puff delivered to the same side of the face. The two events happened almost simultaneously with great accuracy that it almost felt like a cause and effect.

The recorded delay was between 800 and 1,000 milliseconds, making the two stimuli be perceived as one. Over a dozen of areas of the brain were found to respond strongly to lateralized multisensory stimuli than to lateralized unisensory stimuli, thus improving user experience.

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