The beginning of the touchscreen is the end of the touch sense.
Smart devices, especially the touchscreens, are what we touch most often everyday these days. According to Dscout back in 2016, a heavy user touches the phone 5427 times a day.
However, our sense of touch is not designed to feel these flat, smooth and perfect surfaces. By swiping and tapping on the glasses, we perform the most precise touching, yet do not use our touch senses at all.
It's a pity that our sense of touch is rendered obsolete because we can perceive minuscule changes in surfaces down to 13 nanometers, invisible to the naked eye, about the width of a human hair.
The revival of the touch sense with music.
Music has a "texture", and its infinite variety is perfect for generating textures.
As a medium, I choose textile because of its agility, wide range of production techniques, but most of all, because it is so nice to touch.
The challenge is first, to create a model to generate the pattern which any piece of music can be fed into. Second, to find the most appropriate production method based on the pattern.
The music textile visualizes and texturizes sound.
What used to be enjoyed only through the sense of hearing can now be enjoyed by the hearing impaired.
For the visually impaired, the music can now be related to the feel on the fingertips, which enhances the experience and memory of music, but also gives them a way to choose the playlist and songs, just as people with normal vision buy records “by the cover”.
In the book Emotionally Durable Design, Chapman talked about how empathy has a lifespan:
“Most products are capable of creating even a small amount of empathy at the point of purchase; from this point on, however, product longevity is soberly dependent upon the sustainability of that empathy. Waste, therefore, is a symptom of expired empathy, a kind of failed relationship that leads to the dumping of one by the other.
Mutual evolution will effectively transcend obsolescence of this nature by successfully carrying the partnership well beyond its passionate early stages. Desire for fresh reflections of the ever evolving self also manifests itself through a resentment of stale.
In defining consumption as a meaning-seeking process…to consume is to aspire, and to waste is to stride forth in triumph. Therefore, the origin of the ecological crisis we face appears to lurk deep within a single, yet profoundly universal, inconsistency. Consumer aspirations continually evolve, whereas products are hopelessly frozen in time.”
What "Tactilesonic" achieves is the mutual evolution between the user and the music medium.
The music in the form of textile has details in color, texture, etc. that you can look at more closely and feel in different ways.
The textile would suffer some wear and tear, and the user would have to maintain
it or repair it just like how people take care of other textiles. The bond between the human and the medium would be strengthened by every touch, making it an artefact that is emotionally durable.