A very peculiar news item on BBC website “Intimacy device lab ceases trading” caught my attention. Though not interested in a Scottish lab (Distance Lab), my curious technical mind would not give up the quest for the definition of so called ‘Intimacy Device’. Disbelief and astonishment stuck my brain and is still trying to comprehend that scientists can come up with something so bizarre.
So what is an Intimacy Device?
The Intimacy Device called Mutsugoto, proposed to be deployed in bedrooms of romantic couples living apart, provides couples ability to virtually draw on remotely located partner’s body using a pen stroke on own body that are reflected on partner’s body by installed devices on both locations. Inventors claim that with the reflected red light and own imagination one feels the touch without being actually touched. See the link below including Frequently Asked Question.
Lab is closed after two years of work but it is astounding that inventors believed that commonsense would not prevail and romantic couples would spend money on reflecting red light on each other. Being an Engineering graduate, I believe in technology but feasibility and requirement are the foundation stones and ethics are critical as well. Assuming it was feasible, simulation of human touch will always be non real. Even if the Intimacy Device worked, the result: VIRTUAL OR FAKE INTIMACY. Don’t we all strive for true love and intimacy?
What are your thoughts?