Should our emotional well-being be the concern of our gadgets and household appliances? An award-winning Japanese refrigerator prevents access to food unless you grin. Why does this sound like a nightmare? RocketNews24 writes:
Scientists at the University of Tokyo Sony CSL (Computer Science Labs) have come up with an ingenious way of cheering people up- forcing them to smile in exchange for easy access to their food. Attaching a device called a “Happiness Counter” to a regular refrigerator, Sony’s scientists are hoping to make us happier people.
The technology scans a person’s face, detects whether or not they are smiling and, reading anything other than a big, cheesy grin, makes the door difficult to open.
The thinking behind the tormenting device is that people, particularly those who live alone or who have little interaction with other people, often forget to smile. Since smiles produce natural endorphins in our bodies that cheer us up, the more grumpy-faced of us are, allegedly, more likely to feel down in the dumps.
The design, which received an award as one of the top 100 new inventions at the Good Design Awards this year, reportedly has a genuine effect on users’ mood, and can be installed in the office or around our homes in an effort to promote an optimistic approach to our daily lives.