Sony considers smell based photo-printer Aug 06, 2012 11:12 by Mike Derges
Yes, you read that headline right, Sony are looking into the concept of a photo printer that produces images that smell.
The novel idea came from the mind of Chinese student Li Jingxuan who studies at the Fashion and Art Design Institute of Donghua Univeristy.
Li’s small photoprinter will have a sort of ‘electric nose’ which will pick up the smell of whatever is nearby. The clever machine then analyses this smell, and then recreates it through a complex array of “aroma inks” as it prints the image.
Everyone’s home has a distinctive smell, and imagine how special a card from the grandchildren becomes when it looks like them, has writing from them, and smells like them! Association is incredibly powerful for memories and is has great potential.
Likewise, you can create moods with printouts. Sending a relaxed card? Light a smelly candle before you print and have that smell past onto your card, ready for it to be scent… sorry, sent… to the lucky recipient.
Smelly Prints? What Next!
It’s pretty interesting to think about where this could lead. We already replicate sight by way of cameras, the internet and printers, why not smell?
If this device leads to people being able to record and share smells as easily as we currently share images we could be set up to experience even more of the world from afar.
What if the sensor passes on to the camera you use for your holiday snaps? Imagine a 6×4 print of your trip to the Rome Colosseum… that printout being able to reproduce the same musty smell from when you were there, bringing all those memories straight back to you? And those summer walks… the amazing local market… Amazing.
It goes even further. Picture this smell technology integrating with this years big thing, 3D printing. Shops closed on your anniversary? No problem! Print out some fake flowers, that smell just like the real thing, and you’re set. That’s three of the human senses satisfied for storing memories, now for sound!