MIT does it again.

Posted in Uncategorized on March 11, 2009 by rmluther

I just finished watching this TED talk by Pattie Maes, and it blew my mind. MIT has developed a wearable device that combines a camera, a mini projector with a mirror, and a cell phone that gives the user the ability to gain projected metadata about whichever object or person is in the camera’s view. The implications and applications of a technology like this are astounding. Instead of looking at the internet through a window (your computer monitor), you step through that window to let it surround you. This would bend our experience of the internet to respond not only to our gestures and mouse clicks, but also to the context that surrounds us. I dig it and I want it.


Posted in Uncategorized on March 10, 2009 by rmluther

This rocks my world. I love music, and being able to incorporate it into clothing would kick ass. I’m going to look into using this method to modulate recorded samples or realtime audio. Awesome.

Dynamic T-shirt

Posted in Uncategorized on March 4, 2009 by rmluther

This is the result of my experimentation with thermochromic inks. I chose to represent a bass guitar, which, when heated, turns into a celtic broadsword. The idea is that, when playing a show, I will heat up enough to reveal the inner spirit of my instrument (a bass guitar being my weapon of choice).



The screens I had access to were limited in size. Ideally, the graphic would be much larger, like below:


Pinecone inspired smart clothing

Posted in Uncategorized on February 5, 2009 by rmluther

This research team at the University of Bath’s Centre for Biomimetics have begun developing a responsive textile that reacts to heat and humidity. Without electricity or sensors.

They are drawing inspiration from the pinecone, which will expand in response to heat and humidity once it has dropped from its tree. This is caused by two perpendicular fibrous layers that react to the conditions at different rates, which causes them to affect each other, changing the overall shape.

This mechanical solution is very elegant and compelling. If the material itself can be organized in a way that creates these responses, then we can avoid integrating electronics all together. It makes for a much simpler, more reliable solution.

Tron guy

Posted in Uncategorized on January 31, 2009 by rmluther

This guy got pretty internet famous for making his Tron costume (based on the 80’s movie “Tron”). He used EL Wire.

“Electroluminescent wire (often abbreviated to EL wire) is a thin copper wire coated in aphosphor which glows when an AC Current is applied to it. It can be used in a wide variety of applications- vehicle and/or structure decoration, safety and emergency lighting, toys, clothing etc – much as rope light or Christmas lights are often used. Unlike these types of strand lights, EL wire is not a series of points but produces a 360 degree unbroken line of visible light. Its thin diameter makes it flexible and ideal for use in a variety of applications such as clothing or costumes.” – Wikipedia

There are some interesting potential applications for this stuff…

Augmented Reality

Posted in Uncategorized on January 23, 2009 by rmluther

Augmented reality at work

This is interesting. Augmented reality is essentially the practice of overlaying computational data (images, information) onto one’s frame of vision. Imagine playing a video game as you stroll downtown, or being able to see the purchase information for a product floating above it as it enters your gaze. For a scarier image, think about omnipresent facebook, bringing up information about people as you interact with them on the street. Remember terminator?

“one of its most important characteristics is the way in which it makes possible a transformation of the focus of interaction. The interactive system is no longer a precise location, but the whole environment; interaction is no longer simply a face-to-screen exchange, but dissolves itself in the surrounding space and objects. Using an information system is no longer exclusively a conscious and intentional act.” – wikipedia

This technology is still in it’s infant stages, but it is being developed by a few different parties around the world. The current solutions all involve boxy battery packs and hardrives strapped to the body, with a big visor fixed to your face.

Imagine all that in a pair of sunglasses. Exit iphone, enter eyephone.

the beginning

Posted in Uncategorized on January 14, 2009 by rmluther

This blog is going to be my main port for showing the progress of my interactive wearables class. By interactive wearables I mean the integration of circuitry and computation into soft products worn on the body.

This is a very new and interesting topic to me, as I have worked with soft products before, but never in this capacity. Let’s see what happens.