Posted in ICT, Visual impairment

A Touchable Universe

Ever heard of ‘haptic technology’?

No, I hadn’t either, until recently.

Anarkik-3DWhen I was invited along to Anarkik3D’s ‘A Touchable Universe’ Project : the potential of haptic technology to improve learning outcomes’ I really didn’t know what to expect.  I now know that this technology is really exciting and potentially has huge application for learners with additional support needs.

Basicaly, haptic technology allows you to interact with a computer using touch.  Using a special mouse, gloves or other piece of hardware, you can engage with virtual 3D objects.  For example, you could scuplt a figure out of “clay” on your computer and you would feel it, even though it’s not physically there.  Or, you could explore a virtual landscape, feeling the textures of buildings, trees, water… Can you imagine the learning and teaching applications here?  Add in a 3D printer and you have even more possibilities! I had a go of a haptic mouse when I tried the technology and I was giggling away – it has to be tried to be believed.  For more information, have a look at the Wikipedia article about haptic technology.

Now that I’ve explained a bit about what haptics can do, would you like more information/to get involved?  Fantastic!  Anarkik3D are holding an event on Thursday 2nd April, 16:30 to 18:30 at The Bunker at Gayfield Creative Spaces, 11 Gayfield Square, Edinburgh, EH1 3NT.  There will be the opportunity to try out the technology, see how it fits with other technology such as oculus rift and tablets, and the opportunity to participate in developing ideas further particularly towards your own ‘wish lists’.  Plus, there will be refreshments!!

If you are interested in this event, please RSVP to Ann Marie Shillito on – hope to see you there!


Teacher at the Keycomm Resource Centre in Edinburgh, Scotland. Love my wee family, my cats, my friends. Passionate about inclusive education, nice red wine and travelling.

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