How Internet Odors Will Work

Using E-Smells

This digital scent technology will be able to do more than allow you to attach e-smells to your e-mails. Imagine watching The Patriot on your DVD player with a DigiScents device plugged into it -- as the Colonial army's cannons blast, you can actually smell the gunpowder. Or, as the British army marches across the battlefield, you can smell the grass beneath them. The scent of the ocean could be emitted during scenes in which Benjamin Martin's (Mel Gibson) family seeks sanctuary in a freed slave village on the South Carolina coast. The whole idea here is to increase the realism and enhance the viewing of your favorite movies.

The same type of effect could be created for your favorite video games. While consoles like PlayStation 2 are designed to enhance the realism of video game graphics, a digital scent synthesizer could take games to a whole new level. Imagine smelling the bad guy who is approaching before you actually see him. Developers of racing games could embed the smell of burnt rubber or gasoline to make their games more realistic.

Before being attached to movies and games, Internet odors will likely permeate through Internet advertising. Just as advertisers used scratch and sniff technology a couple of decades ago, they will likely use the novelty of digital scents to peddle their products now. Coca-Cola could embed their cola smell into banner ads, which could be triggered by a user scrolling over the ad. Suddenly, you're thirsty for a Coke. Sounds like pretty effective advertising.

Consumers may also benefit from this aromatic technology. With online spending on the rise, shoppers will now be able to sample some of the goods that they buy, including flowers, candy, coffee and other food products. Soon, you'll be able to stop and smell the roses without leaving your workstation.

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