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Many researchers around the world are aiming to leverage the sense of touch in the communication medium between multiuser 3D virtual world and real environment. In this paper we propose a system that brings 3D avatar centric virtual interpersonal communication events as a form of haptic stimulation to the real world users. In order to render the haptic stimulations, we considered a neck piece (tactile haptic device) that the real users can wear in a scarf-like suit. Further, we enhanced the Linden Lab's multiuser online 3D virtual world, Second Life in order to facilitate the haptic communications. In our model when one of the virtual avatars kisses the other in Second Life, an event is triggered. The event is decoded by our system to send haptic based kiss to the real user via the Bluetooth-enabled neck piece hardware. Some of the potential applications of the proposed approach includes distant lover's communication, remote child caring, and stress recovery.
Date of Conference: 11-15 July 2011