A raised eyebrow, a cautious smile, a daring glance: facial expressions reveal a lot about someone’s feelings. But what if you cannot see them? After losing his sight, Simon Dogger found this a huge loss of quality in communication.
His Emotion Whisperer is a subtle tool that can prompt the visually impaired with the body language they’re otherwise missing out on. It comes with a pair of camera glasses that sends images of conversation partners to an emotion recognition app. These are analyzed and translated into a sensory signal: emotions like attention, surprise or happiness are felt by a specific vibration of the small device in the palm of your hand. You can actually feel someone smiling.
Simon Dogger traveled the world by bike a large part of his life, which led him to long residence stays in the Middle East and Japan, creating a base for understanding people and leading to a human centered approach further through his life. During his design education he lost his sight, returned 5 years later and graduated the Design Academy Eindhoven in 2017. He now works as a sound and sense designer.
Dogger’s designs never start with the solution in mind. Unimpeded by the limitations of aesthetics, he has been able to analyze people’s wishes and needs without having a preconceived idea of the outcome. On the other side, his human-centered approach has resulted in innovative concepts and products that bridge communication gaps. The functionality aspect of his designs ranges from ‘reading’ someone else’s emotions to finding your way in a large public building – even if you cannot see. With the applications like the Emotion Whisperer and Tik-tik indoor navigation, Dogger explores a new field in our era of visual information. By treating sense and and sound as equal alternatives, no one gets shut out.