TED Resident Keith Kirkland and his team at WearWorks use haptic technology to develop products and experiences that communicate information through touch. In 2017, they were faced with a seemingly impossible challenge: quickly develop a device for a blind ultra-marathon runner to compete — unaided and unassisted — in the New York City Marathon. Jennifer Brook, a design researcher at Dropbox, explains how the team at WearWorks navigated the challenges and tensions of designing this groundbreaking new technology in the video below.
WearWorks is a design company developing products that communicate information entirely via touch and are Research Fellows in the Pratt Institute Brooklyn Fashion + Design Accelerator’s t.LAB, a research and development center for advancing the manufacturing of responsible smart garments and functional textiles. By utilizing the skin as a non-intrusive communication channel, WearWorks’ vibration-based language creates new possibilities for information communication. Through their wearable device – Wayband, a non-visual interface creates independence for the blind and visually impaired as they easily and effectively navigate the world around them.
Video commissioned by Dropbox and created in partnership with TED Ideas Studio, the branded content arm of TED Partnerships
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