The modular "haptic" floor tiling system is made up of a deformable plate suspended on a platform. Between the plate and platform are sensors that detect forces from the user's foot. And the plate can give off vibrations that mimic the feeling of stepping on different materials. A top-down projection and speakers add visual and audio feedback.Augmented-Reality Floor Tiling (via Beyond the Beyond)
Yon Visell, a researcher at McGill's Center for Intelligent Machines and first author of the paper, says the tiles could be used "either for human computer interaction or immersive virtual reality applications."
The floor could even function as a giant touch-screen controlled by feet, Visell suggests, acting as a way of navigating a giant map on the floor of a building lobby or public square. He says it could also be used in gaming and entertainment, adding more interactivity.