According to Huffman, the magnet works by moving very slightly, or with a noticeable oscillation, in response to EM fields. This stimulates the somatosensory receptors in the fingertip, the same nerves that are responsible for perceiving pressure, temperature and pain. Huffman and other recipients found they could locate electric stovetops and motors, and pick out live electrical cables. Appliance cords in the United States give off a 60-Hz field, a sensation with which Huffman has become intimately familiar. "It is a light, rapid buzz," he says. I'm wondering if this isn't a way to work out some of the touch/tactile issues I'm working with? Magnets in gloves, on the skin or using speaker coils and drivers connecting directly to the skin?
There's also a large commecial body attempting to simulate touch. One example is over at: http://touchlab.mit.edu/news/AsiaTimes_TheInternetsghosttouch.htm
1 Norton, Quinn. Wired. A Sixth Sense for a Wired World. Visited 10-23-07. http://www.wired.com/gadgets/mods/news/2006/06/71087