alexandtheweb / blog

Web wearables and tech textiles

All manner of web-enabled, tech-augmented textiles have been cropping up lately, from jackets that hug you when you’ve been liked on Facebook to an app that tracks and pairs your NFC-chipped socks (the app also comes with – wait for it – a “blackometer”).

On the more crafty – and less silly – side of things one can find “soft circuits”: LilyPad Arduino, especially designed to be sewn into various wearables. Go ahead: make awful light-up Christmas jumpers and LED-studded scarves to your heart’s content. Technology’s on your side.

All well and good, but how much closer are we to the ultimate hipster wet dream, glimpsed a few years ago in this Justice video?

If I really wanted that animated, web-ready – and possibly interactive – tshirt, I might consider the e-ink shirt . Or I might invest in the tshirtOS project, brought to us by CuteCircuit, the “future fashion” company.

But of course I wouldn’t. Every single one of these projects is in some way ridiculous or unappealing. But what I love about them is that they all seem to be churning up from a fertile swamp of innovation that may or may not yield something genuinely appealing and useful. The “ooh, how about this?” charm.

So, how about a hat that doubles as storage for my most interesting thoughts?