Xianzhi Zhang

    concept generation
    mechanical design
    interaction design
    embedded system design

Feel the conversation.

Feel the conversation. is an experimental project that challenges how people experience communication by substituting language with haptic feedback.

So far, users have described feelings of closeness, excitement, disgust, intimacy and more. What will your conversation feel like?

This project has been featured by Dezeen and Business Insider.

Feel the conversation is a new way to playfully express the feeling of a conversation between people who maybe don’t speak the same language or share the same culture. It investigates if communication could still take place without verbal conversations.

Feel the conversation comprises two handheld machines that translate the user’s speech into a series of simple haptic patterns based on their intonation and volume.

The device records the user’s speech with an embedded microphone. The peaks are then detected in real time to determine the intonation of what is being said and the volume at which it is being spoken. This is then mapped as either an upward or downward movement of the silicone feelers of the partner’s phone.

Two attachments, a brush-style blue silicone feeler and a piece of silicone shaped like a tongue, produce different sensations.


Watch a video to discover examples of interactions.