Scientists Learned to Make Any Surface Touch-Sensitive

Touch-sensitive displays became a revolution on the mobile device market. This technology allowed manufacturers to get rid of button cell phones and fit all tablets and smartphones with touchscreen displays. But scientists from Carnegie Mellon University went even further. They designed a technology that can transform any surface into a touch-sensitive panel.

The invention was called Electrick and it’s based on the electric tomography principle. During the development and experiments, scientists used special conductive paint that can make any object sensitive to touches. Plus, it’s possible to programme a computer, so that it would perform different operations depending on the object the user presses on.

Chris Harrison, one of main scientists responsible for the project, said that Electrick may be the first case when you can take a spray paint and turn any object into an entry device. The technology might be very attractive to mobile accessory makers because smartphone cases can become interactive – users will touch them in certain areas and control the apps.