In this cold, cold online existence, with only hot takes and eggplant emojis to keep us warm, we are slowly becoming devoid of real human contact. But while most think the solution is to make human interaction rely less on our phones, one group of researchers is trying to make our phones feel more human instead. At least, if your idea of "human" is someone who wants you to put the lotion on the skin, or else you get the hose again.
Good news for folks who thought they'd have to wait until after the apocalypse to start using skin for accessories: A team of designers from Telecom Paris in France has developed a phone case that mimics the look and feel of human flesh. Called the Skin-On Interface, the case will not only feel exactly like skin-on-skin contact, but will also allow your device to interpret your mood through haptic feedback. Hold onto it for long and stroke its back, and your phone will know you feel comfortable. Squeeze it, and it can know you're angry. Squeeze it for a long time, then almost drop it, and it'll know it needs to clear your browser history.
But, and this needs to be very clear, the Skin-On Interface is not a sex thing. Ignore that holding a fleshy phone will likely feel like you're cupping someone's junk in your hand. Ignore that this was thought up by a culture with multiple movies and TV shows about people so into their phones that they want to have sex with them. Also ignore that it was created by a man because he "wanted to pinch" his device. As well as a team of people who think that stroking your phone is perfectly acceptable behavior. Who previously invented the MobiLimb, a realistic-looking human digit attachment for phones that makes them crawl towards you. And definitely ignore how combining both these accessories would make it look like you're trying to jerry-rig your phone to fulfill a narrowly specific sex fantasy about Cousin It from The Addams Family.
Ignore all that, and maybe focus on how if you ditch the weird realistic-looking skin fetish, phones that can feel your emotional state solely by how you hold them can have quite a few interesting applications. Although we can't think of single one that won't be used to better tailor which ads we get. Ads which, after you buy a human flesh cover for your phone, will be yet another reason you no longer use it in public.
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For more, check out Even Elton John Hated The New 'Lion King' and Disney Sure Is Proud Of All The Crazy Sh*t They've Made.
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