TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Singapore Scientists Embrace Plan for Cyberhugs

Singapore Scientists Embrace Plan for Cyberhugs

Reuters News Wire (
Mon, 28 Nov 2005 11:32:06 -0600

Singapore scientists looking for ways to transmit the sense of touch
over the Internet have devised a vibration jacket for chickens and are
thinking about electronic children's pyjamas for cyberspace hugs.

A wireless jacket for chickens or other pets can be controlled with a
computer and gives the animal the feeling of being touched by its
owner, researchers at Nanyang Technological University (NTU) told
Monday's edition of The Straits Times.

The next step would be to use the same concept to transmit hugs over
the Internet, it said.

"These days, parents go on a lot of business trips, but with children,
hugging and touching are very important," the paper quoted NTU
Associate Professor Adrian David Cheok as saying.

NTU is thinking of a pyjama suit for children, which would use the
Internet to adjust changes in pressure and temperature to simulate the
feeling of being hugged. Parents wearing a similar suit could be
"hugged" back by their children, the paper said.

Copyright 2005 Reuters Limited.

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