We increasingly use digital technology to augment our senses, but we rarely realize that other senses are numbed in the process. Smell is a good example of a powerful sense that is hardly articulated in our technological culture. Designer Lloyd Alberts envisioned a speculative product called the Sniffer, which allows you to visualize scent in a Google glass style. Watch the video for an impression of its use in everyday life.

The Sniffer – aka Google Nose – visualizes odors using a smell sensor, which is as good as a dog’s nose, and a glass in front of your eyes. You can identify the faintest scents and see the source of the odor on a distance. You can also admire the spectacular color play of your cooking. This is all possible; just ask Sniffer.

The smell of a good wine visualized in the augmented reality display

See smell trails using the Sniffer

With the capability to see scents you are capable to identify and locate everything you smell. This could be locating foods or identifying perfumes but you can also use it to find persons. You can easily find your loved ones by following their scent trail. Obviously this may also result into violation of privacy and as the smell sensor is more sensitive than your own nose, you might learn personal information about pregnancy or deceases which was supposed to be kept secret.

Sniffer design consisting of the odor sensor and the Google glass style visual display

The Sniffer is currently still a conceptual product. The Design Fiction project was developed by Lloyd Alberts, coached by Arne Hendriks at TU/e Next Nature Lab.

Visit Sniffer Website.

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