PSFK’s Trending Topic: How Design & Tech Can Create More In-Person Interactions

PSFK’s Trending Topic: How Design & Tech Can Create More In-Person Interactions

New apps and tech products are trying to bring users back face-to-face.

Leah Gonzalez
  • 29 may 2014

Recently, technology specifically has gotten a bad rap for making us “antisocial,” with people glued to their phones and other devices instead of focused on forging real relationships. However, we’ve noticed a trend of tech and design pieces that aim to bring us back to each other, from an inflatable suit that facilitates conversations to a dance app that forces users to move together.

Take a look at some of these tech and design pieces below.


Inflatable Suits That Mediate Arguments

Expanded Discourse, developed by Zoe Padgett and Gerardo Guerrero, is a piece of inflatable clothing that is designed to give the thoughts of the wearer a physical form and the time in which they have to express them. The designers hope the inflatable suit will help people get their thoughts out during meetings and discussions. The suit was created using Arduino, a PC fan, and a microphone audio sensor that lets the suit inflate and deflate. When the wearer wants to speak, he or she inflates the suit using a plastic attachment on the shoulder and as they talk the suit slowly deflates.


Two-Way Bib Creates Portable Picnic Table

The Napkin Table, created by students at Tunghai University’s school of design, is a small and lightweight portable bib and table device that makes eating outside a convenient and social event. The foldable device has a fabric that fastens around the neck of the users like a bib. It then locks into place and becomes a table. It has cut out holders for cups and pockets for silverware to make sure nothing slides off or falls from the table. The Napkin Table lets users eat outside and get to know their dining partners better.


Video Chat Connects Senior Citizens With Brazilian English Learners

Ad agency FCB Brasil and CNA language schools partnered together for the “Speaking Exchange” project, where they connect CNA English students from the city of Liberdade in Brazil to retired seniors in the Windsor Park Retirement Community in Chicago. The project provides a solution to two different issues – giving English learners a chance to practice the language with native speakers and providing companionship to the elders in the retirement community. The project uses a video chat program to connect the seniors and the students.


iPhone Game Forces Two People To Dance

The Bounden app, created by app developer Game Oven, is a mobile game that encourages iPhone users to dance and learn new moves choreographed by the Dutch National Ballet. To play the game, two people have to hold on to the same iPhone and tilt it to access the gyroscope. The two players follow a sphere and a path of rings, and in the process they have to move their arms and bodies like in a dance. The object of the game is to get the rings into the center of the sphere. At the end of the game, players are either entangled with each other or dancing flawlessly.


Dubai And The Future Of Humanitarian Design

Design & Architecture
Work Today

Community Builder: How to Hack Slack

Claire Wasserman, Founder of Ladies Get Paid, describes how she's using an internal team communication tool to build a network of thousands

Food Today

This Beer Was Brewed Just For Scotch Drinkers

Highland Park Scotch Whisky & Sixpoint Brewery have teamed up to create two limited-edition pairings for New York City boilermakers


Get PSFK's Related Report: Future of Automotive

See All
Mobile Today

Let An AI Librarian Help Sort Your Digital Bookmarks

A new app uses machine learning to help organize your virtual life

Mobile Today

Pizza Hut Tattoo Lets You Place An Order From Your Body

The latest gimmick from the fast-food chain is a tattoo-like sticker that lets customers get delivery with a simple tap on their arm

Related Expert

Domenico Vitale

Content & Production

Travel Today

Reinvented Bicycle Inspired By Supercar Design

The yellow bike based on a Lamborghini has sharp edges and an aluminum alloy frame

Health Today

Health Platform Gives Perspective On Your Weekly Habits

Gyroscope is a new wellness app that works by amalgamating data about your life into beautifully designed visuals

Beauty Today

Korean Beauty Brand Uses VR To Let Customers Pick Their Ingredients

Innisfree created a unique experience for its Shanghai Disneyland customers with a virtual reality trip to select what goes into their purchase


Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry

PSFK Op-Ed Today

Fitness Advocate: Paving The Future of Workouts With Audio

Ethan Agarwal, CEO of Skyfit, shares how he's democratizing access to boutique fitness classes through an app

PSFK Labs october 21, 2016

PSFK Picks: Top 5 Performance-Enhancing Wearables

Our new report looks at innovations pioneering the future of performance through intelligent activewear and predictive analytics

Arts & Culture Today

3D-Printed Creations Resemble Floating Paper Outlines

Japanese design firm Nendo's exhibition features works that look like sheets of material being folded, torn, and crumpled

Technology october 21, 2016

Concept Camera Designed To Only Take Unique Photos

Camera Restricta is tool that prompts photographers to only capture one-of-a-kind images

Technology october 21, 2016

Fragrance Will Release The Smell Of Data If Your Private Information Is Being Leaked

The device is designed to create a physical cue for the potential dangers lurking online

Retail october 21, 2016

LYNK & CO Is A New Auto Brand That Promises Mobile Connectivity On Wheels

Online access and mobility sharing are driving the company to disrupt the auto industry

Gaming & Play october 21, 2016

Nintendo’s New Console Pushes For Portable Gaming

The Switch allows gamers to seamlessly play on the go by themselves or with friends

Travel october 21, 2016

Become A Citizen Of The First Nation In Space

Asgardia is a new concept for a floating society above Earth

Entertainment october 21, 2016

Speaker Displays Song Lyrics As Music Is Played

The device is able to generate the graphics on a translucent screen and retrieve the words from a connected database

AI october 21, 2016

Travel Assistant Scans Your Emails To Make Planning Easier

This AI add-on will sync with your inbox and sends reminders to make sure you don't miss anything important

No search results found.