An old friend of mine came to visit me last weekend. This was the first time since we started college that she has been able to come visit me in Chicago. So, playing the good tour guide, I took her to the Museum of Science and Industry. While the museum is generally full of fun and interesting things, I was most excited about discovering The Hug ShirtTM . This shirt, designed by Ryan Genz and Francesca Rosella is an exciting combination of technology and fashion.
In a nutshell, The Hug ShirtTM can be connected to a cell phone through Bluetooth and can receive hugs either from someone else who is wearing The Hug ShirtTM or from a regular text message that uses the appropriate software. Unfortunately, it is not yet commercially available, though hopefully it will be in the not too distant future.
I think this is a really cute idea and potentially quite useful, particularly for long distance relationships or for those who must travel a lot for their work. Most people consider physical contact an important part of maintaining intimacy and a lot of time spent apart is potentially harmful to these relationships. This becomes more important in an age where it is easier to travel and communicate. It is now not only possible but easy to make connections with people in geographically distant places.
Imagine being able to put on this shirt and through the help of technology, receive a hug from someone you care about who may not be physically close enough to do so. For at least a little while it would shorten the distance between two people.
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