Touch video dataset

by Gijs

Touch video dataset can be accessed at:

‘You don’t know what you got ’till it’s gone’, as the lyrics to a popular song would have it. Indeed, this seems to be the case for touch in these times of social isolation, distancing, and staying at home. News media, now more than ever, cover stories about the lack of touch in elderly homes, between friends and family and how, in some cases, technology could provide some relief (the UCL In-Touch project has a nice collection of media stories). Researchers working on touch have had to move their research online in order to adhere to social distancing measures. Research being conducted covers, for example, people’s daily touch experiences (or lack thereof) and impressions of observed touch.

A few years back my colleagues Christian Willemse (previously University of Twente/TNO) and Merel Jung (now Tilburg University) and I recorded a dataset of videos showing a person’s arm being touched in different ways by different objects. Back then we were interested in how impressions of touch would depend on the type of touch and how the touch was applied (e..g, by a social robot). Now, we have made all videos we recorded available online under CC BY-SA 4.0 license:

We hope that the video dataset will be useful to people studying touch.