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Published: 20 Jun, 2018

Designing for the sense of touch: a new frontier for design

NEWS Camille Moussette explores how interaction designers can leverage and embrace the sense of touch to develop interfaces and experiences that go beyond traditional visual and form-based aesthetics. He will defend his thesis on October 30 at Umeå Institute of Design.

Designing specifically for the sense of touch presents new challenges and opportunities for design: developing an object or object that feels right is quite different than designing a product or device that looks good. For example, how could a safety system warn a car driver using the sense of touch?

The proposed approach titled Simple Haptics offers concrete examples, recommendations and design guidelines demonstrating how interaction designers can successfully discover and embrace the sense of touch for designing touch-based experiences.

Historically, haptics – all different aspects of the sense of touch and its study – has developed around very technical and scientific inquiries. Camille Moussette’s thesis aims to develop haptics from a design perspective, uncovering and fulfilling people’s needs first and foremost, leading to a new field of activities labeled haptic interaction design. It advances that haptic attributes (how things feel through touch) are increasingly part of the qualities that make up the interactions and the experiences we have with objects and the interfaces that surround us, and that these considerations can and ought to be knowingly and explicitly designed by designers.

Camille Moussette thinks that the results of this thesis may help making the sense of touch easier to discover, learn and embrace for designers.

“My hope is to inspire design researchers, students and practitioners all over the world to discover and value haptics as a core component of any new design activities, “ says Camille Moussette.

This thesis is the first Ph.D. degree in Industrial Design at Umeå Institute of Design, Umeå University. It constitutes an important milestone for the institute and its research activities.

About the public defense:

On Tuesday, October 30, Camille Moussette, Umeå Institute of Design, will defend his thesis titled: Sketching Haptics: Sketching Perspectives for Haptic Interaction Design. Swedish title: Att skissa i haptik: skissperspektiv för haptisk interaktionsdesign. The public defense will take place at 9:00, a.m. in main Auditorium, Umeå Institute of Design.
The external examiner is Bill Verplank, Ph.D, Stanford University, USA.

Read the whole or parts of the dissertation at:

For further information, please contact:

Camille Moussette (in English)Telefon: 073-033 0980
Personal homepage: http://guchmu.comHigh resolution photos:

Editor: Ingrid Söderbergh