Haptic Media (MS2110.01)

Teddy Pozo

“Haptic” is a word that refers to the sense of touch, derived from a Greek root meaning to grasp, perceive, or fasten. Haptic technologies and haptic aesthetics may communicate through, or mediate this tactile sense between people. We often think of touch as doing things with our hands, but touch affects all parts of the body, playing a role in smell (particles entering the nose), sound (as vibration or a wave), taste (of the tongue touching), and even vision (through synesthesia or haptic visuality). With social interactions becoming increasingly digital, many of us may feel “touch starved,” looking to mediated forms of intimacy and community. How can haptic technologies, haptic aesthetics, and uses of these in video games, virtual reality, digital-physical art installations, and even early moving pictures, communicate the many different aspects of tactility at a distance? How can we communicate felt experiences as forms of unique knowledge? Drawing from video game studies, humor and gimmicks, and feminist film theory, this course takes an interdisciplinary approach to questions of haptic mediation. Students will complete three packets of deliverables toward a single unified interactive design using haptic and feeling aesthetics, and present this work in a collaborative final showcase. The final aim of the course is an exhibition of experimental student work presented either virtually or in person, and documented online. No previous media studies or game design experience will be necessary.

Learning Outcomes:
- Describe and analyze the haptic properties of media including film, video games, installations, and virtual reality
- Historicize contemporary haptics with regard to electrotactility, vibrotactility, film exhibition gimmicks, and video game control
- Explore emotional and interpersonal aspects of touch in technology and art
- Build and exhibit simple physical-digital installations

Delivery Method: Fully in-person
Course Level: 2000-level
Credits: 4
W 2:10PM - 5:50PM (Full-term)
Maximum Enrollment: 16
Course Frequency: Once a year

Categories: 2000 , All courses , Four Credit , Fully In-Person , Media Arts , Media Studies
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