Disney Has Invented a Jacket That Allows You to Feel Physical Experiences in Virtual Reality
Have you ever wanted to feel like a snake is crawling across you? How about being punched? Or is getting a virtual hug more your speed? If you answered yes to any of these questions, Disney’s latest invention may be right up your alley.
Disney Research, along with MIT and Carnegie Mellon, has invented a jacket that allows you to feel physical experiences while in VR (Virtual Reality). This is a huge step forward in VR technology and makes it seem like Disney is looking at VR to be the newest ride technology at their theme parks.
The “force jacket” weighs five pounds and has 26 different air bags that inflate or deflate to help simulate the physical experiences the user is seeing while wearing a VR headset, or at least that is the goal of the jacket. Software controls the airbags in the front, back, arms, and sides to make the user feel like they are experiencing what they’re watching unfold in front of them.
Three apps were developed by the team to test the jacket, which were a snowball throwing game (testing the feeling of being hit by a snowball), a snake simulator (to test a snake moving around on the user), and a muscle growing game (to feel like the user is experiencing rapid muscle growth, like the Hulk.)
Will this technology be used in the theme parks? Only time will tell, but with the amount of money and effort being put into the tech by Disney, it sure looks like they are hoping it will be implemented.