The new pandemic buttons that will turn you into a Jedi

In a few days we will celebrate a year of pandemic and we still have no idea how much longer we will have to live together with the ‘cansinovirus’. What we do know for sure is that this health crisis it won’t be the last.

Reports from the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Bank warn that these outbreaks of infectious diseases are inevitable and that sufficient means are not being put in place to protect us from those to come. Bill Gates goes further and maintains that we must prepare to fight the next pandemic as if it were a “threat of war”.

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It also advises that we still do not have treatments that respond quickly and efficiently to new biological threats. That would lead us to a scenario identical to the one we live in now where the bug roams at ease and we have to learn to live with it.

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With this in mind, Stuck, a Singapore-based industrial design studio, has decided to do its bit with Kinetic Touchless: a technology that allows you to interact with buttons without touching them, thus avoiding contagions through contact with surfaces.

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The novelty of these buttons is not so much the ‘Touchless’ part – there are already several models on the market that are remotely operated – but the ‘Kinetic’. Stuck’s invention not only detects the presence of the finger when approaching it also reproduces the response movement of the button itself when you press, pull or slide.

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‘Kinetic Touchless’ is designed to use in elevators, but it is easy to guess how it would be implemented on doorbells, ATMs, or on interactive menus in fast food restaurants. I can already imagine the kids of the future going to dinner after watching the last of ‘Star Wars’ and ordering a hamburger with a wave of the hand as if they were Yoda’s great-great-grandson.

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