March 30, 2005
The shirt that senses switched-on mobile phones
AwareFashion, by Richard Etter, Diana Grathwohl, Sigmund Homolya, are clothes that react to invisible communication technology in the surrounding and since most people wear mobile devices the system also enables the wearer to sense the presence of other people.
The AwareFashion shirt has sleeves that glow in the proximity of switched-on mobile phones. It features an antenna, a tiny circuit board, button cells and fiber optics woven into the cloth. The antenna detects radio waves of GSM mobiles. The circuit board processes the radio waves and converts them to light which travels through fiber optics to the end of the sleeves. There the light emits and indicates the presence of near mobiles.
The antenna and circuit are hidden in a detachable pocket and the fiber optics sewed in the cloth are used as fashion design elements. When a mobile is near, small light spots appear at the end of the sleeves. The color of the light can be chosen by the wearer, so he can match it to his style.
The team is currently developing an AwareFashion Item that detects WLAN.
Related story: Mass Distraction.
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