Friday, May 08, 2015

Haptic Touch with Deer and Dogs

I learned this morning that Apple is calling the tapping signal that the Apple Watch delivers to its wearers when a message comes in, or an event is triggered, a "haptic touch."

No doubt this new wave lingo will sweep the world, as all things Apple do.

Apple writes:

It’s called the Taptic Engine, a linear actuator inside Apple Watch that produces haptic feedback. In less technical terms, it taps you on the wrist whenever you receive an alert or notification, or press down on the display. Combined with subtle audio cues from the specially engineered speaker driver, the Taptic Engine creates a discreet, sophisticated, and nuanced experience by engaging more of your senses. It also enables some entirely new, intimate ways for you to communicate with other Apple Watch wearers. You can get someone’s attention with a gentle tap. Or even send something as personal as your heartbeat.

This kind of thing is only good news for e-collar trainers looking to break through the fright-talk, inexperience, and ignorance of folks who have never seen the new e-collars in action.

Last night I was walking the dogs at their second park of the day (we are all happy that Moxie's heat is over). As we came down a path towards an old fox den that I wanted to check out, a deer rose 20 feet away. I tapped the dogs and they stopped, their noses craning forward and their tails stiff with excitement.

And that was it. 

The dogs did not move more than a few feet, I did not move more than a few feet, and the deer settled down and began to graze less than 25 feet away. I looked around and saw another deer 15 feet farther along.  He too was head down and grazing, only ocassionally stopping to look our way.

The two deer, the two dogs and I just hung out like that for about 10 minutes, until I got bored and walked the dogs back the way we had come. We would check out the fox sette another day.

All of this thanks to the "haptic touch."

Marvelous stuff.

Amazing thing can be done with little taps. And now Apple is going to normalize all of this to the masses.  Not only is the era of shock collars over, replaced by new e-collars with 100-levels of blunt stim, so too is the era of fear-mongering over e-collars.  After all, apparently people can actually feel a "haptic touch" from their Apple Watch.  I cannot feel my e-collar set on 5, but apparently the dogs can and it's enough.  I tap the button and the dogs give no overt signal they feel anything at all other than the fact that they change direction and happily come back to me for a treat. Walking two or three dogs off-leash, and without concern, even with other dogs, children, and wildlife about is a marvelous thing. And not just for me -- for the dogs as well!


Shannon Gentry said...

Thanks for your continued information about e-collars. Your writing about them has led me to experience first hand how comfortable a dog and owner can become with the use of an e-collar.

Wish I could have been on that walk with you all!

Mary Pang said...

Do e collars work to prompt a dog to DO something rather than only STOPPING them from doing something?
I've gotten very lazy since an injury a year ago left me with chronic pain. I wonder if this haptic technology would help me get up and do more. I have to be extremely motivated these days to move from a position of comfort or conversely push through the pain.

PBurns said...

Yes. My dogs come with a tap. It's their default response. Actually I don't even have to tap now as the voice alone stops them. But they ignored the voice initially. Now the tap just reinforces the voice.

The Apple Watch is mostly designed to get people to do things: stand up, walk, etc. It provides regulate feedback for goal-making and achieving. Because it's on you and giving you sensory input, it's supposed to be much more effective than text on cell phone, etc.