Recently by Kathleen Volk Miller:

And its virtual reality apparatus.

Your heart is racing and your breath feels constricted. You’ve started to sweat around your hairline. You’re not sure if you should call 911, lay down, open a window, or…put down the book.

Have you ever read a book and found yourself at a loss as to what to think and feel?

Yeah. Me neither. But for those who have, consider Sensory Fiction, a wearable device and augmented book now in prototype at MIT. It straps on, and most of its brains ride right between the shoulder blades; it mostly looks like a techno-savvy baby carrier.

As the protagonist’s emotional or physical state changes, so does the reader’s, via ambient light, slight vibrations, and, get this: localized temperature fluctuations and constricting airbags that actually change the reader’s heart rate. The emotional response I’m getting right now, without wearing the device, is: fear. The device has airbags?

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I had to have my roof redone a few months ago. The man doing the roof was a man I had just begun dating, and he had his friends helping, doing my 100-year-old 20-pitch, two-and-a-half story house for about half of what my neighbors had paid.

 

So I cooked. I made hot lunches the six days they were there — barbecued beef on crusty rolls, chicken soup with spinach and tortellini, carved ham and cheese, buffalo wings and pepperoni bread. These meals were accompanied by side dishes like homemade cole slaw, carrot and raisin salad, tortilla chips with cheese. I timed desserts to come out of the oven just as the men were finishing their lunches — chocolate chip cookies, cherry dump cake, brownies, plum cobbler. Each morning I had donuts or coffeecake, muffins or Danish waiting on the kitchen table. All day, I made sure there was a… More…