Getting a “like” on Facebook can be gratifying. But as gratifying as a hug?
Melissa Kit Chow, an artist and designer, along with Andy Payne and Phil Seaton at the MIT Media Lab, picture a world where you can have both at the very same time. Well, sort of. Her Like-A-Hug vest inflates to simulate the feeling of a hug when you receive a “like” on Facebook.
The vest, Chow writes on her website, “allows hugs to be given via Facebook, bringing us closer despite physical distance.”
A video of the vest, which can be seen here and below, shows that when a “like” or hug is received the receiver can see who sent the hug on their phone and then hug the vest itself to send a hug back to the sender, who would be wearing the same type of vest.
Of course, this is all just a project right now out of MIT, not likely to come to market anytime soon, but wearable computers are absolutely becoming a reality. Google is planning to release its Google Glass glasses next year and more and more smart watches, which integrate with smartphones, are coming out.
“Connecting it to Facebook conceptually was simply a way to explore how social media might push past the traditional graphic user interface (GUI),” Chow wrote on her blog. Whether it is a vest, a bike helmet, a watch, or a purse, it doesn’t look like our clothes or accessories will be able to stay tech-free for long.