‘Wearable computing device’ could be used to control computers and guide users via tactile feedback

Sony patents ‘SmartWig’, boasts vibrating sideburns and a laser pointer

Sony has patented a ‘SmartWig’ which could integrate tech such as GPS navigation, a computer mouse and a laser pointer into a hairpiece.

The patent describes the wearable tech as a “wearable computing device, comprising a wig that is adapted to cover at least a part of a head of a user, at least one sensor for providing input data, a processing unit that is coupled to the at least one sensor for processing said input data, and a communication interface that is coupled to the processing unit for communicating with a second computing device.”

“The at least one sensor, the processing unit and the communication interface are arranged in the wig and at least partly covered by the wig in order to be visually hidden during use.”

Some of the proposed features include sideburns that could be used to remote control slideshow presentations:

“One or two switch buttons may be provided under the sideburns of the wig , and the one or more buttons are connected to the external computer via a wireless connection (using the Wi-Fi module).”

“During a presentation the user may, for example, move forward or backward through presentation slides by simply pushing the sideburns. Thus, the user can control the presentation slides simply by natural behaviour like touching side burns.”

Another utility included in the wig could be a laser pointer.

”The laser pointer may, for example, be arranged on a forehead part of the wig, so that the user may point out relevant information on the projected slide in the above-explained presentation mode,” the patent explains.

“Moreover, a mouse pointer (not shown) may be set on the back of the head of the user, so that the user can control the external computer remotely and move around freely.”

For those venturing out of the office, Sony also has you covered, suggesting that tactile feedback, such as vibration or miniature electric shocks, could be used to turn the device into a “navigation wig” – using GPS to deliver the feedback in order to guide users.

While the patent is largely only ideas, it mentions that “the proposed wearable computing device has been demonstrated several times in internal meetings”.

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