Looking Outwards: Liquid Haptics

In 1998, Tom White did a considerable amount of research into liquid haptics, encompassed in his paper “Introducing Liquid Haptics in High Bandwidth Human Computer Interfaces”. In it, he describes a growing body of work in which he takes part that uses physical material as a medium of transposing interaction and dexterous intent while at the same time proving a form of tactile feedback.


One of the devices he created contained a bad of fluid atop a clear glass plate, under which a camera tracked the thickness of the bag that would change with pressure applied from above.

Most certainly a novel application of existing technologies to produce a varying degree of haptic feedback in the Z direction, I’m very curious if haptic feedback can be provided in more directions. In other words, what does the experience of submersion of handsĀ in a semi-fluid afford us? If this reduces preciseness of motion, what does it afford us in other areas?