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Introduction to Wearable Technology

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Introduction to Wearable Technology Rain Ashford http://rainycatz.wordpress.com


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Hello, my name is Rain and I create interactive wearables and art, working with many flavours of microcontrollers & various components…


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‘Yr In Mah Face’: temperature /mood sensing t-shirt I’m interested in… Social interaction – formal and informal events where one is put on the spot/ ecruciating circumstances: networking, bars, clubs, meet ups, conferences, etc. Building multi-sensor wearables which output data on the wearer’s physiological signs comprised of: a logging device sensors – tracking physiological signs: heart rate, accelerometer, temperature, etc. visually reactive sonically reactive it might record sound / feedback from user camera


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A few examples of my wearable electronics & artworks… Wearable technology is a diverse area, and can be fashionable, whimsical, fun, practical, arty, serious, protective, interactive, sensing, medical, energy harvesting, communicating, musical and lots more…


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Wearable technology of yore: heavy, messy, angular & clunky In the beginning…


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Beam me up Scotty… ..sci-fi has a lot to answer for!


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But we’re moving on from when wearable tech evoked thoughts of axe grinding cyborgs, serf robots, toasters and space pirates…


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The miniaturization of technology has changed how people build & use wearable tech & electronics; they’re no longer comprised of cold, bulky sharp, boxy & ugly components that you might prefer to remain hidden Meanwhile in real life…


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A few examples of my wearable electronics & artworks… The aesthetics & challenges of technology vs garments / accessories is not trivial and need much more research to get them to work together… ..plus how to manufacture, distribute and market these products. AR HMD / HUD examples


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A few examples of my wearable electronics & artworks… Though the way we are interacting with technology is changing our expectations. We want ‘always on’ communications, apps and devices that work in an ambient manner to only alert us when needed… ..but there’s still a lot of work to be done in areas such as interoperability, sustainability and battery size / management


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A few examples of my wearable electronics & artworks… Interesting questions… What are we going to use Wearable Technology for? Will smartphones / computers end up integrated into our clothing? Ethics issues - who owns / has access to our data? Privacy & Surveillance How far will we get towards Cyborg culture - implants anyone? CuteCircuit M-Dress


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By inspiring a new collective of technologists and creatives to enter the tech industries Don’t underestimate Hacker & Maker Culture having an influence on the evolution of technology


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..a convergence of readily available electronic components, shared knowledge through communities and open source approaches to technology has broken barriers to learning & creativity New business opportunities, approaches to working, commerce & online communities


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For me, the availability of sewable electronics & e-textiles has revolutionised the way I and many other artists & designers work Sewable Electronics


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..plus the styling of some of these components has made them more attractive to work with


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…allowing me create much more elegant work


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…incorporating the technology into the design


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The LilyPad! Pin 1 - TX/D1 Pins 2,3,4 - D2, D3, D4 Pin 5 - GND or "-" (ground) Pin 6 - VCC or "+" (power) Pins 7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15 - D5 through to D13 Pins 16,17,18,19,20,21 - A0 through to A5 (analog pins)


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LilyPad Arduino Microcontroller Conductive Thread E-Textiles C (ish) Programming Sensors Actuators Hacked Electronics Conductive items Wearables Sound Artworks Games All Interactive What I combine with it: To make:


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LilyPad Arduino Microcontroller Fabulousness It’s sewable! It’s open source – you can find the Eagle files & free code libraries online / with IDE Good number of digital & analogue I/O Great vector for encouraging girls/ boys /adults/ artists /anyone / to experience electronics It’s round (dismisses the idea that electronics are sharp grey and cold) Enthusiastic & helpful community My wish list An industrial version Make it cheaper More modules please Different sizes and shapes of board Choice of microcontrollers Variable voltages More competitors, to increase innovation (Flora, Seeedstudio) Development of washable conductive thread


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The availability of sensors in particular that allowed me to bring my ideas to fruition Sensors…


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..plus there’s lots of information out there on how to make your own! DIY Sensors (and actuators)!


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Components: Sensors vs. Actuators A sensor is an input device / an actuator an output device Sensors Input: stimulus / A physical quantity, property, or condition which is measured Output: electrical signal - current, voltage, phase, frequency Variations: output can sometimes be displacement: thermometers, magnetostrictive and piezoelectric sensors. Some sensors combine sensing *and* actuation. Actuators Input: electrical signal - current, voltage, phase, frequency, etc, Output: mechanical (force, pressure, displacement) or display function (light, display, dial indication, etc)


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LEDs LCD / OLED Display Servos Motors Piezoelectric buzzers Speakers Electroluminescent Wire Electroluminescent Panels Actuators for wearable technology include…


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Optical, Light & Sound Temperature & Humidity Energy Harvesting Radiation / Environment Heart Rate Proximity / object detection Gas & Liquid / Chemical Inertial Biosensor GPS Compass / magnetic field Weight Pressure / Force RFID Electric Current / Potential Touch WiFi EEG Sensors for wearable technology include…


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In my research I’m starting to note key areas of sensor & actuator usage, against groups & areas of usage… Sensors, actuators, industry and creatives - bringing it all together


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A few examples of my wearable electronics & artworks… Sports & interest in wellbeing/self monitoring has made much headway into pushing Wearable Tech into the mainstream, especially as many gadgets work with smartphones… ..unsurprisingly Apple has taken note (pic Dec 11)! 2012 Olympics: Lolo Jones (US) used using motion-detecting sensors to trigger high speed video cameras in her 100m hurdle bid. 2012 Olympics: Mimi Cesar (UK) gymnast, used a `MotivePro’ by Birmingham City University, a vibrating sensor suit to track and record her movements.


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A few examples of my wearable electronics & artworks… Some favourite examples of sensing / active clothes & accessories … Dhani Sutanto’s Oyster RFID pass ring for using on London Transport Light sensing dresses by Rainbow Winters: uses thermochromatic reactive to light, colour changing inks Elena Corchero Vintage Solar Fan & Parasol


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A few examples of my wearable electronics & artworks… Sensing Art and Performance pieces… Rainbow Winters: Thunderstorm Dress: lights up to sound Elena Corchero Vintage Solar Fan & Parasol Ricardo O’ Nascimento: “PAPARAZZI LOVER” a reactive dress that responds to the flash of a camera icardo O’ Nascimento: “UNTANGLE ME” dress is a playful twist on a garment come alive


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A few examples of my wearable electronics & artworks… ..lets not forget Wearable 3D Printing! Iris van Herpen & Daniel Widrig’s amazing dresses! 3D bikini by Continuum Fashion, printed in nylon 12 printed to order from Continuum’s Shapeways shop Andreia Chaves’ printed shoes Naim Josefiand Souzan Youssouf, Beckmans College of Design.


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Energy Harvesting clothing: Energy harnessing space suits: NASA Motivating Undergraduates in Science and Technology initiative. The suits incorporate piezoelectric zinc-oxide nanowires which creates a charge in response to physical strain like bending or twisting. An in-shoe device designed to harvest the energy that is created by walking, and store it for use in mobile electronic devices In-shoe device: University of Wisconsin-Madison Andrew Schneider’s solar bikini retrofitted with photovoltaic film strips sewn together in series with conductive thread


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A few examples of my wearable electronics & artworks… Medical: Epidermal Electronics 1960s wearable insulin pump Monitors electrophysiological signals associated with the heart, other muscles and brain activity Electronic tattoo, University of Illinois 2012 artificial pancreas & insulin pumps in development as shown by Gil de Paula of Pancreum at WT Conference 2012


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I wanted to create something interactive, as I could find no other documentation for conductive Velcro, some sort of plaything seemed an interesting idea and after some pondering I decided on a 3 x 3 grid system I <3 0X0: an interactive artwork, game, musical fancy and experiment in conductive Velcro


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Hacking existing tech & combining sensors has allowed me to make pieces such as ‘You Make My <3 Flutter’: a proximity detecting, heart rate sensing ‘techlace’ visualising physical signs


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And for looking at social interaction -‘Yr In Mah Face’: temperature /mood sensing t-shirt - uses Celsius temperature data from a sensor, averages it, then visualises the results via LEDs.


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I’m also interested in practical uses - Don’t Break My Heart is a wearable, colour-coded distance warning system prototype for cyclists to wear on their back


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Summary: exciting time for e-textiles & wearable tech Availability of sewable electronics is revolutionising the work of artists & designers Self-monitoring movement i.e. Quantified Self is pushing wearable tech into the mainstream Hackspaces & online communities are helping demystify electronics & coding Open Source ethos is sharing & making knowledge more accessible Small Maker start-ups are changing the face of tech entrepreneurs Sewable electronics are inspiring a broader demographic to become interested in electronics & coding School age students are investigating electronics & code via e-textiles and wearable tech


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Summary: wearable tech will be improved by Necessity for more standards and classifications Sustainability – recycling, reusing, repurposing - supply chain isn’t yet set up for wearable tech A lot of focus on the technology, but not enough on what the consumer wants: design, uses, size Marketing focus – sales, dissemination, tech know how - how do we help the public understand and use? Developments in battery / power supply tech: less bulky, better longevity, lighter, comfortable Washable circuits, sensors and microcontrollers – to gain acceptability they need robustness and logivity


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A few examples of my wearable electronics & artworks… Those interesting questions again… What are we going to use Wearable Technology for? Will smartphones / computers end up integrated into our clothing? Ethics issues - who owns / has access to our data? Privacy & Surveillance How far will we get towards Cyborg culture - implants anyone?


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Thank you for your attention! @Rainycat http://rainycatz.wordpress.com Rain Ashford 2012


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