Bouquet - a color to smell translator

On his website, Niklas Roys calls himself “an inventor of useless things”. He is a designer, a maker, a teacher. Recently, Niklas gave a workshop at ECAL’s in Lausanne, Switzerland, during which students were challenged to come up with innovative communication devices.
Erika Marthins, Arthur Moscatelli, Pietro Alberti and Andrea Ramìrez Aburto built Bouquet a synaesthetic olfactory device that allows users to perceive color through fragrances. The device detects the color it presented and delivers a corresponding mix of fragrances through the nozzle. Bouquet acts as an extension of the user’s olfactory senses in order to deliver a different sort of augmented reality. The students finished this impressive project within one week. 







 
In “the heart”  of Bouquet is an Arduino board.  The device shaped like a cone and has an optical sensor built in its tip, with which it recognizes different colors. Inside the cone’s bottom is a stepper motor controlled disc, that turns pads with according scents directly under the nose of the operator. If you’d point it to a red color, for example, the disc would turn a cotton pad, which is soaked with the strawberry aroma, to the device’s smell opening, so you can feel it.  









The students found some great natural smells for the different colors. Representing blue turned out to be a bit of a challenge, but at the end, they decided to translate it to the fresh artificial smell of a chemical “Blue Ocean” room fragrance, which was fitting very well.
To finish up this brilliant work, they even designed a series of colorful posters, with which everyone could try out their device. 






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