The Intuitive Jacket

A Wearable Interface Acknowledging the Role of the Body in Trauma Mental Health

Tor Alexander Bruce, Linda Lightley, Clive Wright, Kim Julia Smith, Shannon Grayson, Lars Erik Holmquist

An ambitious, multidisciplinary project has been developing between Connected Experiences Lab (CXL) and with Fashion and Electronics, each within the Design School at Northumbria University.

The exploratory research investigates a gap in wearable technology with application and functionality in mental healthcare and proposes a prototype design called: The Intuitive Jacket.

The initial concept is based on the work of Tor Alexander Bruce who a doctoral researcher at NU. His research involves the design and prototyping of a digital therapeutic intervention called: The Timeline, situated in an immersive interactive virtual reality (VR) room at

Coach Lane Campus; also recently trialled at James Cook University Hospital in Teeside.

Up until this point, participants visiting the immersive room had opportunity to close down a VR door representing their deep past (in a trauma mental healthcare context) by touching the interactive wall with their hand, i.e. the room contains 270 degree wraparound, virtual walls.

Expanding on this was an idea that instead of a participant touching one of the walls, they could incorporate their own body as the interface, offering a more personalized approach that could be significant in

a trauma context. The Intuitive Jacket provides this level of autonomy.

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