Thursday, July 10, 2003

Pretty wearable

Katherine Moriwaki is a PhD candidate in the Networks and Telecommunications Research Group (NTRG), University of Dublin, Trinity College - some of the researchers involved in the Texting Glances project I blogged some months ago and included in my recent paper on ubicomp and the city.

Katherine has designed some subversive garments that are very cool:

Recoil was inspired by dense urban environments and the micro-spaces people occupy during daily travel. Small, powerful magnets are embedded into everyday clothing, causing unexpected and sometimes uncomfortable physical connections between people and objects.

A "Strap-on" Mobile Phone. One that combines the illicit pleasure of auto-erotic stimulation with persistent fears of the harmful long-term effects of mobile devices. The finished M-STRAP will be integrated into regular garments, the first being a pair of unisex pants.

And some that are pretty:

Radius is part of an ongoing project titled "Network of Three." The first in a series of soon to be networked garments, Radius currently translates the movement of its wearer into a light array which is displayed across the garment surface. Individually Radius serves as a conduit through which personal self-expression can manifest. When eventually integrated into a (future) network of responsive garments Radius will function as an network node facilitating and visualizing data exchange.

And if you are a member of you can check out her 2002 article, The Future of Wearables, which discusses how art and fashion are making wearable technologies more beautiful and expressive. This is something I've written about here many times, and it still makes me smile to think that some of the best hardcore tech design is being done by women who didn't believe that Borgs were an adequate model for wearable computing. Sweet!


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