Transformation from intelligent to emotive – no, it’s not your girlfriend during a fight. According to Philips, this is the future of technology. While the trend in the past few years is to produce independent (intelligent) think products, people in Philips believe that in other decades or more there is a shift in products that are more intuitive towards human emotions.
The Philips Design Probe Program is a “deep research initiative in the future that tracks trends and developments that can ultimately evolve into mainstream issues that have a significant impact on business”. This program uses research in five fields – politics, economics, culture, environment and technology – to determine what might occur in the future. Even though the language on the Philips website is rather unclear, the ultimate goal of this program seems to try to get a taste like what life after 2020, and identify how technology products will enter the new world.
And, so far, design probe projects have produced a number of innovative ideas. One of these ideas is for the skin: dress (photo), which is a dress that uses emotive technology to read someone’s mood and respond with color and pattern. This idea is part of the entertaining skin area that exclusion will take place in technology from “smart” products for “sensitive” products. These sensitive products will use high-tech materials to feel the emotions and the surrounding environment. So, an individual who wore one of the dresses could see his appearance suddenly changed because he felt the change in his emotions.
Along with the skin: dresses, other related ideas contained by Philips are skin: tattoos. According to the video on the Philips site, this tattoo will develop and change on the skin based on mood and sensation. In videos, the emotional countries of the two lovers are visualized by the transformation of the tattoo on the skin. Of course, ideas of items such as clothing and tattoos that communicate human emotions are interesting – even if they are still like science fiction at this time.
But the probe program is intended to encourage product designers to think outside the box. While many ideas may never be produced, this program creates anything from narration for prototypes to help get ideas, and stimulate the debate. Philips also hopes that looking into a distant future will eventually help companies improve the way they innovate.