Moving into a discussion session where so look at potential next steps or areas for further work. Tom asks for a non-moaning positive discussion about positive actions that can come out of the thinking so far.
Janis says she represents ‘the happening and the social’ – interesting to get into the socio/political aspects – and the aspects of ‘cloaking’ to enable action in difficult situations.
But what do electronic textiles actually mean? Danger of ‘meaning loss’. How do we define them and what does it mean?
How do these things fit together – as objects and as expressions of materiality. In a world that moves away from ‘things’ as objects.
And can we differentiate between electronic textiles and smart textiles?
The difference between the here and now and the ‘in and out’ (whether the device is embedded inside the body or just outside it) and it can be on completely different scales. Possibly even embedded in people.
The need to think about technology in a different way especially as it becomes more ‘intimate’ and closer to the body.
It’s all about the technology – and people seem resistant to take up electronic textiles – as too intrusive. Yet they use mobile phones always and feel they are being controlled by their phones to a certain extent.
Radical innovation driven by design-led activity (rather than market-based product development).
“What are the things people are dreaming about that could be addressed with the ch ages in the technologies that might bring about the development of electronic textiles.”
Examples of pressure-sensing bandages, examples of military applications to clothing and vehicle monitoring systems.
The speakers in this opening session are: Tom Fisher, Adam Drazin, and Janis Jefferies.
Tom – While there’s a lot of work going on in various laboratories, the seems to be a lack of relationship between the ‘heat and light’ in fashion, performance and art – this doesn’t seem to me to be feeding through into actual innovation in practical applications.
Adam – issue he’s seeing is to do with ‘ecosystem’ approach and how it doesn’t link to textiles. Not sufficient to focus down on specific uses – textiles are almost too ubiquitous. Whereas a broad brush approach is not sufficient and too general to provide insight. The concept of Utopianism and people’s aspirations not being met. Borders between professional world and everyday world very blurred. Cites worries and dis-illusion in the material world. How we engage with work clothes in a hospital say, and in fashion are very different. Utopianism and the future of the body. Not about temporal models placing the body on a pedestal.
Janis – involved in weave – it’s about ‘electronic communications in cloth’ for her; and look at the links to privacy and surveillance. new ways of knowing and composing relationships and what does that mean in terms of ethics, care and new ways of living? Need also to look at different publics and representations – and who controls that data.
Weaving and textiles analogy is very strong – commenter says she follows what Janis says and feels that it’s important. “Knots and nodes” says Janis. Needs not to be a one-way relationships – must be back and forwards “A shuttle!” Says Janis.
Raymond Oliver – P3i
How do we make things skin-like rather than silicon-like?
Why are textiles so slow to get “smarter”?
Seems to be a big issue over the need for integration across many disciplines.
Digital – physical – sensory fusion will take the next 5-10 years. Lots ‘bridging’ between science/tech and design.
Argument – from audience – say little demand for body-monitoring – no one wants to be told what they already know by a technology that tracks heart rate – we know we should loose weight, be healthier – and what would I do with the heart rate data anyway? Raymond says that how we look at ‘soft responsive’ technologies for rehabilitation – part of health and wellness.
Q re visual anthropologist – looking at how you do things. Yes – they are studying how we are operating and what we are doing.
Janis – soft logic of emerging trends especially in health monitoring.
Raymond is taking a very technologically driven approach – look at the charts – and now talking about hydro gels with embedded pharma and what’s called 4D printing.
Sarah Kettley; the Internet of Soft Things
Work embedding wireless technology in jewellery – and ‘working from the body’ up with dancers and performers using technology.
Using the Aeolia stretch sensing project as an example – and look at the ‘dilemmas’ table – interesting!
Why do things have too be unobtrusive? We might want to make the technology visible in public. “Critical design is part of the lingo in design – doesn’t seem to happen as much in textile education”. Not everyone agrees with this statement.
The difference between expression and function – different levels of scale and construction.
Using the statistics around depression – and Sarah is working with the mental health charity Mind. Lots of people showing up at Mind services without a clinical diagnosis. Complex network of issues.
Now talking about the difference between ‘technical’ and ‘smart’ textiles. And also the example of “person-centred design” vs “user-centred design”.
Janis – q of gender and demographics – and high suicide rates among 18-24 year old men in Ireland (a project Janis has been involved with). Sometimes organisations like Mind are ‘already too official’.