Being physical in a digital world – Presented by Gijs Huisman, Digital Society School

Being physical in a digital world – Presented by Gijs Huisman, Digital Society School

It may be a slightly uncomfortable realization but an increasing portion of our time is spent living in the digital realm. We connect with others through Facebook or Instagram, we get work done by sifting through e-mails or having meetings on Skype and Slack, and once we get home we may relax with any number of digital games.

Despite these developments we are still flesh-and blood creatures. We are physical beings in a digital world. When our physical and digital worlds merge new challenges and opportunities arise. I will draw on theories of embodied cognition to present a view on technology that augments reality by means other than visual feedback. I will question the role that such technologies may play in the way that we connect to each other and to our broader (social) environment.

What drives you?
A deep curiosity about life, the universe, and everything and the role of interactive technology in our quest for connection and understanding.

What are the three things you would take with you on a deserted island?
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy; a chef (preferably René Redzepi); and, obviously, a towel.

What emerging technologies/trends do you see as having the greatest potential in the short and long run?
Visual AR technology, both in smartphones and in dedicated headsets, will pave the way for new interaction paradigms. More comprehensive forms of AR that include other modalities, in particular touch from an embodied perspective, will offer interesting possibilities for the future.

What kind of impact do you expect them to have?
New ways of sharing experiences with and relating to other people.

What are the barriers that might stand in the way?
A lack of understanding human nature and a fear of experimentation to change the status quo of technology.

Why should people attend your presentation?
I aim to provide thought provoking ideas about how to design technologies that blend digital and physical reality.

About Gijs Huisman
I have a broad interest in people-technology relations, but particularly in technology’s role in social interactions. I have a PhD on Social Touch Technology and love to translate theoretical knowledge into practice and philosophize about the implications. I am also co-founder of startup House of Haptics where I work on haptic technology to connect people.

About Digital Society School
We believe that our digital society can be inclusive, intelligent and engaging
Why wait until the tech that shapes our future is a given? Instead, let’s work on ideas to successfully integrate digital technology in our lives and society today. At Digital Society School we invite you to direct your interests, knowledge and effort towards building a digital society. Because we believe that it can -and should- be inclusive, intelligent, and involve us all.Change is paradoxical, in that we continuously strive for it while being afraid of it at the same time. Transformation takes this one step further. It touches the core of what everything has been like up to the point of transformation. It requires creativity and courage: the courage to pursue grand, abstract goals and the creativity to solve, by 2030, the challenges the world now faces.To this end, we have founded the Digital Society School. Through the school, we seek to research the impact of technology on society, develop the skills necessary to guide the transformation and pass on this knowledge and these skills to a new generation of professionals. They are ready to begin work on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals for 2030. They will be the architects of transformation, across the world as well as in your organisation.
For more information go to the site.


About Internet of People Event
The Internet of People Event will take place on November 23, 2018, in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Scope: Internet of People (IoP) = Internet of Things (IoT) + the ’WOW’ factor, The Human. In the following years we will see an entirely new Internet emerging, as the Internet unleashes itself from the creators’ intentions and develops in transformative ways. Humans are shaping the future of this new human Internet. When things get smarter, how do humans and things cooperate? The conference will address this social aspect of the internet, the internet of humans.

Focus topics: Interaction between things and humans | The Human Internet vs the Machine Internet | People as peripherals | Big Data; New open standards for personal data | Social impact of connected devices | Internet of Brain | Security and Privacy | Ethical issues | Cloud intelligence | Cognitive computing | Wearable Technology and Application | Technology developments: Human body signal collection/ Biometric Sensors/ Improved human interface

It will be a niche and innovative event, where you will be able to join in the discussions around the main topics. The conference also includes lunch, breaks and drinks & snacks in the evening, a nice opportunity of networking with the other attendees and the speakers (you will also receive the list of participants a couple of days before the conference, so you can plan ahead).

For more information and registration, we invite you to visit

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