These Amusement Rides Know When You're Scared, and React These Amusement Rides Know When You're Scared, and React
Technology

These Amusement Rides Know When You're Scared, and React

by Alex Goldmark

May 12, 2011

Imagine an amusement park where no two rides on the roller coaster were the same, because the speed was determined by your personal level of panic—as measured by your increased heart rate, or rapid breathing. 

This pair is doing a fine job of cultivating a little novelty and surprise by disorienting riders and viewers with this new way to operate machines. But as the sensors and controls get more refined—and less obvious—the possibilities of this technology become pretty terrifying. Imagine roller coasters that accelerate until you're panicked, there's no escaping the result. Would more people ride it?

Learning applications would also abound—no child gets dissuaded or scared away from a ride (or game, or puzzle) that will only gradually increase in difficulty or frustration to just the right point. Making that kind of experience though requires far far more knowledge of the human condition than a belt that senses a deep exhale. But we'll get there eventually, if we want.

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These Amusement Rides Know When You're Scared, and React