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OPLIN 4cast #517: Wearables beyond your wrist

Posted in 4cast

When one thinks “wearables,” one might think primarily of devices such as a FitBit or perhaps of the much-maligned Google Glass. But this market is rapidly expanding to include inventions that are not only going beyond the wrist and face, but are pushing the boundaries of what personal tech can do (and not just for you…pets are getting in on wearables, too). Smart shirts, interactive clothing and wearable robots are just the beginning.

  • U.S. backs research into smart shirts for emergency responders [ReadWrite] “The project will extend the current functionality of Hexoskin’s smart shirt that monitors the health of the wearer. This connected clothing is unique in that it uses sensors to track cardiac and respiration rates without requiring the user to wear equipment on the head or face.”
  • What will the wearables of the future look like? [ReadWrite] “These wearables provide similar functionality to fitness trackers, showing the pet’s health, wellbeing, and activity. For pet owners with a busy schedule, it gives them a way to check in throughout the day.”
  • Tiny wearable robots drive around your body, are extra pair of hands [Mashable] “But what if countless, fingernail-sized robots can assemble on your arm to form video screens and disassemble to check your vitals and tap you on your shoulder when you get an alert? That is the future ‘Rovables’ are anticipating, a future where robots are both ubiquitous and autonomous and sync almost naturally with their surroundings. “
  • Interactive clothing via dynamic projection mapping [BoingBoing] “Technically, cloth is a ‘deforming non-rigid surface,’ so projecting a stable image onto clothes is a big technological challenge. To solve it, Ishikawa Watanabe Laboratory combined two new techniques that allow stable projection of an image onto clothes even as they move.”

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