Everyone cries when they experience extreme happiness and sadness. Have you ever been curious about the amount of the tears that you have produced through time? When you cry, have you ever wondered whether someone else is crying at the same time, but at the other side of the earth? When a best friend is crying, would you like to send a neck hug by warming up her necklaces? Wearing and using a tear sensitive necklace, you can collect your precious teardrops’ data, upload the data onto a mobile application, and share it with other users who might be crying at the same time as you. You can also send a signal to the application and wirelessly warm up a crying user’s necklace, translating your sympathy into a haptic consolation.


The mobile application will have a real time global crying map generated by the crying users; it allows you to see a blinking world map that represents human’s extreme emotions.





Crying Planet

3. Programe a social app. A number of interfaces are possible (Fig. 4):
A planet might represent a period of time: a month or a season. Each planet’s shape might be different according to the frequency of a user’s crying events.

The right image is a live map of showing global crying activities; it is generated by all the crying users on the earth. (Fig. 5)


Considering the motion of crying and sobbing, the lights’ brightness will represent the frequency of the dropping tears that can be detected by the tear sensor 2.

Tears captured by a painting, “Descent of Christ from the Cross c. 1435”

The Crying Planet project contains two components:

The first is a tear sensitive necklace, which can detect and account for each drop of a user’s tears as well as the slight tearing action. The necklace wirelessly sends the data to the second component of the project, which is a mobile application. In addition, the necklace can change its temperature and shape to soothe a crying user.


The mobile application, also called Crying Planet, which converts actual tears into data and represents them with a live animation: our planet is filling with teardrops. When a user cries, they can use the tear sensitive necklace to detect their teardrops. Each user has an individual account that represents their crying history including the locations and times of past crying events. Most importantly, the mobile application is based on a social networked environment. Users are connected in a virtual community, which allows them to share and communicate their crying experience by reviewing other users’ Crying Planet status and documents; users can leave messages or comments, and there may also be chatting function in the application.


This project attempts to explore a new model of social media especially built for smart phone, which has an intimate relationship with an individual’s activity. On the one hand, paring networked accessory with a mobile phone and its application, it turns an impersonal cell phone device into a mundane object: a tear collector. On the other hand, uploading a specific kind of emotional reaction as personal data onto a virtual community allows the app to support a more advanced form of communication, one that involves affect as well as words. Crying digital documents can be reviewed at any time, as a way of reflecting on emotional moments.

b) Muscle wire (shape-memory alloy): It reacts to voltage changing. When there is electronic currency going through the wire, it will shrink to change the shape and temperature of the necklace.



1. Place the tear sensors (Fig.1):

a) Around the ball’s circumference: detecting the user’s sobbing, slightly crying.

b) At the bottom of the ball: detecting the user’s heavy crying.


2. Experiment with material and design for the tear sensitive necklace. (Fig.2, Fig. 3)

    Smart materials for the necklace:

    a) Shape-changing materials: The surface of the necklace will be flexible materials: silicon, latex, Tyvek (paper-liking), etc

The process of executing this project involves four parts that need to be explored:

Tear sensitive area 1: Activated by the area 1 when the user slightly tearing. The planet’s surface will be covered by mist. The heaviness of the mist is controlled by the amount of tears.


Tear sensitive area 2: Activated by the area 2 when the user intensely crying. The individual teardrop will start to appear on the screen.


Figure 1


Figure 2


Figure 3

Figure 4

Figure 5

4. Mass produce the tear sensitive necklace as a product and test out this new model of virtual communication: smart accessory, the Crying Planet app, and a virtual community.

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