Food Scent Device



Bildschirmfoto 2016-06-07 um 17.51.41
Fig. 1


Inspiroma is a device that helps you to choose your meals. Similar to my recipe app, the concept is about helping people to choose what to eat.

How it works:
When you struggle to decide what you want to make, Inspiroma shows you on a little screen a a certain food. As soon as you press the included scent button, it will spreed the smell of that certain dish. This should help you decide what you crave. Another button allows you to print a detailed recipe on a sheet of paper as soon as you decided what to go for.

Critique and personal thoughts:
This invention shows, that there are more designers who think in the same direction and investigate in the same field. It supports my idea and justifies the app I am planning to do.
However, I might think that this is a gadget that will soon loose it’s excitement for the user. By this, I mean that I don’t see the practical sense of it. I think there are two problems involved that keep it from being successful:
1) I don’t know if I would like the recipes on there. The user should be able to navigate, otherwise you have to skip maybe 30 recipes that you wouldn’t like anyways (eg. you don’t eat meat) until you see one that you would like.
2) As soon as you decided for one recipe and you would print it because you liked the smell, there will be a high chance that your fridge does not contain all the needed ingredients. Would you then have to go shopping first?

This seems like a fun toy, but I don’t really see the practical sense here.

All References:
Designs On (2016) Inspiroma. Available at: (Accessed: 7 June 2016)


Colour Choice


In terms of branding, it is no coincidence that yellow and red seems to reappear.
Red evokes appetite and hunger. Yellow is considered to be a happy and friendly colour. In combination, they also raise a busy feeling for the viewer. Therefore, the combination is likely to be used by fastfood chains as they want people to come inside, eat and leave, instead of giving a comfortable atmosphere that invites people to stay and chat longer.

Fig. 1

Surely, other factors like interior, music choice and volume, smell and many other characteristics support those factors. However, also the colour seems to be well-thought rather than quickly picked (Karen Haller, 2016).

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Fig. 2

Please find full article here.


All References:

Karen Haller (2016) Branding – Why red & yellow is used by the fast food industry. Available at: (Accessed: 4 June 2016)

Moment of Childhood Remembrance

Even if it is not linked to food, the singer of Twenty one Pilots sings about this exact same moment of remembrance via smell that also the video of Ratatouille visualizes:


Listen to the lyrics at 01:29

Visual References (Video):

Fueled by Ramen (2015) twenty one pilots: Stressed Out [OFFICIAL VIDEO] Available at: (Accessed: 25 May 2016)

Key Contacts

BMOF – British Museum of Food
Bompas & Parr


The research folder provides all information that is needed to understand their motivation, objectives and to see their installations of what happens to food as soon as it enters our mouth or how our senses experience food.


Contacting Key Contacts


List of key contacts I got in touch with. Hopefully I will receive some helpful responses.



  • Heston Blumenthal (Chef)
    only could find out about his management; there is no personal email address available
  • Von Diaz (chef)
    there is no personal email address available, so I contacted her informally via Instagram
  • Bompass + Parr (food artists)
    one of the only food artists I could find with a non-commercial but artsy approach, lots of science involved


  • Adrian David Cheok (Director of Imagineering Institute, Malaysia and Professor at City University London dealing with digitalized senses)
  • Sissel Tolaas (Designer, Smell Expert, scientist)
    only found the contact of a design lab she cooperates with; there is no personal email address available
  • Charles Spence (Professor at Oxford University)
    specifically interested in taste perceptions and gastrophysics



  • Iona Inglesby (founder of dotone company)
    Family binding design outcomes to strengthen family bonds
  • Camilla Catrambone (photographer)
    “Family Portrait” – photography series with food to depict her family
  • Anna Del Conte (Chef and Author of “Risotto with Nettles – A memoire with food” that guide through her life and family bye specifically linking to her Italian roots and Italian food) there is absolutely no contact data, management, or website available – so I failed to contact her

Smelling the ideal partner

Apparently, our nose and people’s body odour is mainly linked to our partner choice. Subconsciously, we seem to get attracted to the individual smell of certain people. But why?


Fig. 1


About 20 years ago, Swiss zoologist Claus Wedekind executed an experiment named “Smelly T-Shirt” (The Guardian, 2016). Several men wore a natural fibre shirt over two nights. In this time, they were not allowed to drink alcohol or use any kind of body sprays or perfumes that could influence their personal odour. Those shirts were then boxed and given to a number of women who. They in turn were instructed to choose the carton that contained the most appealing, most sexy and most enjoyable smell.

The experiment resulted in an interesting insight: women chose the boxes that belonged to men who had a different immune system to their own.  But what makes a partner with a different immune system so appealing?
It seems, that subconsciously we are always looking for an other half that we would conceive  the most “perfect” children with. This might be some instinctively inherence that ensures that our descendants will survive. Each immune system has some strengths but also some kind of weaknesses. Bringing to very different structures together helps to “produce” strong and healthy babies that have an effective and strong immune system on their own (Nature, 2016).
So our immune system is more or less smellable and attracts some people, while it repellents others. It helps to find “the rare sensation of perfect chemistry” (The Guardian, 2016).

By now, even partner finding companies are aware of this fact and offer this as a business. Medically, it is possible to test your and your partners immune system by saliva samples. Doctors are than able to analyze and compare the two immune systems – if they are very different it is rated to be “the perfect match” (The Guardian, 2016).

Please find the video below that describes the process and idea of SMELL DATING briefly.

Fig. 2


This topic was highly interesting and perfectly matching for my topic as we are even choosing our partners via our nose. This is mainly linked to our basic instinct to conceiving perfectly healthy children which is in turn linked to family.

Also interestingly and related to my research are is, that we can be identified by our individual body odour which is as unique as our finger print (->Identification)



The Guardian (2016) Can you smell the perfect partner? Available at: (Accessed: 20 April 2016).

Nature (2016) Sweet smell of the immune system. Available at: (Accessed: 20 April 2016).


Visual References:

Fig. 1: Metro (2016) There’s now a dating website that allows you to pick a partner based on their body odour. Available at: (Accessed: 20 April 2016).

Fig. 2: AJ+ (2016) Smell Dating Service Finds Matches Through Dirty T-Shirts. Available at: (Accessed: 20 April 2016).



Psychology Today (2016) The Smell of Love. Available at: (Accessed: 20 April 2016).

Medical Daily (2016) Perfect Match: People Attracted To Body Odor Of Those With Shared Political Views, Not Opposing Views. Available at: (Accessed: 20 April 2016).

Metro (2016) There’s now a dating website that allows you to pick a partner based on their body odour. Available at: (Accessed: 20 April 2016).



Sissel Tolaas

Sissel Tolaas – the woman who collects smells
(Cicero, 2016)

Even if she is a scientific researcher, Tolaas mainly also works as a creative and links smell to the creative industry which seems particularly interesting to me.


Fig. 1


  • artist, smell scientist and researcher, professor
  • collected almost 8000 odors
  • works on a smell archive since 25 years
  • worked for Louis Vuitton, Cartier, Estee Lauder Sony, etc.
  • worked with IFF on the film “The Perfume”
  • exhibited all around the world
    (Wikipedia, 2016)


Fig. 2


Fig. 3



Cicero (2016) Die Frau, die Gerüche sammelt. Available at:üche-sammelt/54288 (Accessed: 19 April 2016).

Wikipedia (2016) Sissel Tolaas. Available at: (Accessed: 19 April 2016).


Visual References:

Fig. 1: Connectivity Room (n.a.) Smelly Design. Available at: (Accessed: 19 April 2016).

Fig. 2: Wiesengrun (2014) Sissel Tolaas / on smell.  Available at: (Accessed: 19 April 2016).

Fig. 3: Design Indaba (2013) Sissel Tolaas on discovering the world from the perspective of the nose. Available at: (Accessed: 19 April 2016).

Museum of Feelings


Glade, the scenting device for homes (product of Johnsson family) sponsored an exhibition in New York’s Museum of Feelings to examine the link within smelling and the exploring of interaction with senses.
The viewers could get in touch with odors and scents while walking through the exhibition platform and could learn about sensual influence on emotional feelings (AdrianCheok, 2016).

Apart from being regularly sold in supermarkets, Glade aimed to give their customers an unforgettable time at their Museum of Feelings. Even if four of our senses were involved, the focus was on the scented rooms that would ensure to raise emotions and to evoke remembrance (Fast Co Create, 2016).
Even if the exhibition does not incorporate all 5 senses, the curators decided to still use the number of 5 and in order to this, create five rooms linked to five emotional statuses:

  1. Optimistic: circuit spraying installation in form of a prism
    Fig. 1
  2. Joyful: greenish, flashy wood-like installation.
    Fig. 2
  3. Invigorating: fluorescent rings that react when stepping on them.
    Fig. 3
  4. Exhilarating: reflections in kaleidoscopic arrangement
    Fig. 4
  5. Calming: Foggy and cloudy like covered floor
    Fig. 5


At the end of the exhibition there is a installation that you can take selfies with. However, it is different form our usual selfies: You put your hands on the surface of a screen and it measures your personal condition. The measured feelings are then applied on the selfie which adopts the color (Fast Co Create, 2016). The color code is explained on the website. This is a playful and creative piece of data visualization. I recommend to see the website:



Extracts from the website:

Fig. 6




AdrianCheok (2016) Media. Available at: (Accessed: 17 April 2016).

Fast Co Create (2016) Indulge your Feelings at Glade’s Museum Of Feelings. Available at: (Accessed: 19 April 2016).


Visual References:

Fig. 1: Radical Media (2016) The Museum of Feelings. Available at: (Accessed: 19 April 2016).

Fig. 2-5: Fast Co Create (2016) Indulge your Feelings at Glade’s Museum Of Feelings. Available at: (Accessed: 19 April 2016).

Fig. 6: Museum of Feelings (2016) Living Gallery. Available at: (Accessed: 19 April 2016).



Museum of Feelings (2016) Living Gallery. Available at: (Accessed: 19 April 2016).

Digital smell

In a bad mood? Take a whiff of your cellphone | Guardian


The following article is taken from the internet and not anyhow changed, altered or rewritten.

Tech innovators are adding a fourth dimension to gadgets and devices: the sense of smell
This device analyzes aromas at Reading Scientific Services, part of Reading University in the UK. Such research could help product developers create digital scent experiences that better mimic the real world. Photograph: Frantzesco Kangaris for the Guardian


Smell remains the most mysterious of the human senses ­­– scientists are still trying to explain why one scent is pleasant to some people and offensive to others, how fragrances conjure memories from years past, and how aromas influence behavior.

“The relationship between individual aromas and emotions can vary considerably from one person to another,” says Beverley Hawkins of the West Coast Institute of Aromatherapy. “There is no guarantee that two people smelling the same aroma will trigger the same memories or emotions. In fact, more often than not, they will not.”

study released earlier this year by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) supports Hawkins’ thought. Researchers found that the genes the body uses to detect scents vary up to 30% in any two given individuals. They concluded that each person has an “olfactory fingerprint” that triggers a unique reaction to the same odor molecule.

On average, a person experiences about 10,000 scents in a day. “Accordingly, it only makes sense that some of these are more pleasing than others to your senses,” says Elizabeth Musmanno, president of theFragrance Foundation. “And this in turn absolutely affects your mood.”

Making smell digital

Scientists have long known that the sense of smell serves as a type of bodyguard, warning people about dangers such as spoiled food or a fire. And there is a clear connection between the sense of smell and the sense of taste. Yet despite their strong impact on our bodies, those two senses are often not at the forefront of our minds as we go about our daily routines – mealtimes being the exception, of course.

“All nutrients that enter our body are monitored by the senses of taste and smell, so these senses are very important in general,” says Dr Richard Doty, director of theSmell and Taste Center at the University of Pennsylvania. “Unfortunately they are taken for granted until they become injured or otherwise disabled.”

That could change as product developers move closer toward creating digital experiences that better mimic the real world. For example, Oscar Mayer collaborated with computer scientist Adrian Cheok to design a phone attachment that releases the scent of bacon – and plays the sound of frying – at a preset time. The Wake Up and Smell the Bacon project won the Most Creative Use of Technology prize at the 2015 Shorty Awards.

Another recent invention is the Ophone, a device invented by Harvard University biomedical engineers that allows users to send “smell messages” in a method that’s akin to texting. Also, the Japanese company Scentee has built odor cartridges that attach to a phone’s earbud jack. One intended use is to trick a user’s tastebuds into believing he’s eating, say, a delicious steak instead of a bland salad – a nice way to make dieting more enjoyable.

Musmanno notes another emerging trend: scenting environments. A store can try to create an inviting place for shopping, a hotel may want to convey the scent of luxury or a 4D movie will perhaps use aromas to tell a story.Glade explored the connection between scent, emotion, and interactive and sensory experiences at its Museum of Feelings exhibit in New York City during the holiday season. Visitors walked through a variety of galleries that were inspired by fragrances and learned about how scent impacts emotions.

Advances in scent technology could also stretch to the workplace. Doty imagines a future in which businesses use smells to boost employee performance. “I can foresee the use of odors in public places such as lobbies of buildings to energize workers,” he says. “This has to be done carefully, however, as some people are allergic to certain odors.”

And then there’s virtual reality. For now, VR headsets are able to produce a fairly realistic replication of scenery and human interactions via two senses: sight and hearing. However for a true real-world experience, the other senses will have to be stimulated, too. “Most likely, smells will be included in virtual reality scenarios just to enhance the experience,” says Doty.

There are challenges in turning scents digital, as they’re not nearly as adaptable to mass electronic distribution as images and sound. However, “as we continue to learn more about our sense of smell and what it can do, there will most likely be more applications in the future”, Musmanno says.

“Scent will definitely be part of the evolution of technology. The more the sense of smell is studied, the more amazing it is discovered to be.”

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