We all scream for musical ice cream
Researchers from Monash University and RMIT have developed WeScream!, a sensory ice cream cone that plays different sounds when eating ice cream, adding a multisensory layer to the ice cream experience.
The technology acts as an additional component or ‘ingredient’ to the dessert, and is designed to enhance the sensory experience. It combines human-computer interaction technology and consists of two interdependent 3D printed ice cream cones that allow users to interact with musical sounds or their preferred playlist.
Project lead Professor Florian ‘Floyd’ Mueller, Director of the Exertion Games Lab in Monash University’s Faculty of Information Technology (IT), said this technology encourages playful social eating experiences.
“Our research found that WeScream! facilitated an enjoyable experience for participants eating together, whilst also increasing their awareness and attention to the taste of the ice cream,” Professor Mueller said.
During the study, researchers examined how 10 participants experienced the different auditory interactions made possible by their eating habits. The system generated multiple sounds by connecting the act of eating and listening as part of a social multisensory experience.
The researchers hope this playful approach to technology will positively enhance sensory dining and drinking experiences.
The WeScream! research paper was published at the 2020 Designing Interactive Systems Conference and won a Best Paper Honorable Mention award.
The full report is available for download here.
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