The Vibro-Tactile Posture Feedback Chair - A Real Back Zapper
I had a feeling something like the Posture Feedback Chair would be created - a chair with a special touch that shocks you into sitting up straight with the feel of a 'horsefly' landing on your back, shoulders, or legs.
But John Morrell, Yale professor of mechanical engineering, and Jean Zheng, a Yale University grad student, co-inventors of the Posture Feedback Chair, are actually trying to tune the back zappers down a few notches. Morrell, who also co-invented the Segway, intended to design a gentle coach "that's not disruptive."
The idea though of a nagging, albeit gentle, buzz to ergonomically set you upright is a good one - maybe better for some than others. Figuring that those who don't want to be reminded would not purchase the chair, the Posture Feedback sitter would likely be motivated to respond to the vibrations by making positive ergonomic changes to their posture. A goal might be to reduce the number of nagging vibrations over a period of time.
Morrell is also working on developing a gentle car seat zapper that reminds the driver of dangers on the road, like a car in the driver's blind spot... or a blind driver, for that matter.
Not bad ideas at all!