In 2011 the tactile displays were thought to be the next big thing in mobile computing. A start-up from NorthWestern University plans to change this concept by introducing a prototype haptic display called Tanvas.
This is a display which can in theory bolt on to any existing touch screen. However you will find all of its uses are not just confined to a smartphone or tablet. Tanvas has been developed through a long research of almost a decade.
The research has been done by Ed Colegate and Micheal Peshkin. This product makes use of electrostatics to modular friction. To define in simple words it makes use of statics so that your finger gets a felling when it is moved across a touch screen.
The feeling cannot be counted to very accurate but you certainly get aware that ‘something’ is changing. For example the digits on your smartphone will jump along a series of horizontal lines. You can also feel the ting of every tooth and so on.
You won’t get a feeling that your touching the exact thing but will have a definite feeling for sure. The most exciting demo given by the company was related to automotive displays. The Tanvas screen will be able to give you a feeling of a notched controller.
When you wish to activate something you will change the adjacent gear like you would in a real time situation. Tanvas is just showing off a prototype that it has bolted on top of Nexus 9. It may get some interest from the tech industry and it won’t be long before we will observe it in a final product.
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Ahmed Humayun is a technology journalist bringing you the hottest tech stories of the day.