Studies show that our ability to empathise has greatly diminished over the last 30 years. It’s due in part to the uptake of smartphones and social media – we’re all too busy thinking about ourselves. But while it might be part of the problem, could technology also be used to make us more empathetic?
2015 will see an avalanche of virtual reality devices appear in the mass market, with the likes of Sony, Google, Facebook and Microsoft targeting gamers across the globe. The technology may now be an attainable reality, but will it be used for anything beyond video games?
When tragedies happen on the other side of the world, it's easy for people to switch off from the reality of the situation, since it's not happening to them. And this was evident in the initial response to the Syrian refugee crisis. But an ad by Amnesty International is bringing it to life.
Cloud over Sidra is the United Nations' first ever virtual reality film. It follows a twelve-year-old girl – named Sidra – who lives in the Za’atari camp in Jordan, and is designed to support a UN campaign highlighting the vulnerable state that is refugee life.
Product design has always considered touch – the ergonomics of a hand grip, texture of a surface, or the weight of material against skin. With the rise of digital, people are looking for more intuitive ways to interact. How is haptic tech changing the way we experience touch?