Fancy Tech on Runway
In the future, we’ll text-message hugs to each other’s shirts, our coat buttons will house cameras, and our underwear biosensors will phone home when we’re in trouble. This week’s runway show brought together 35 exhibitors from 10 countries to display wearable computers, computer-generated jewelry and clothing designs festooned with electronics; the exhibitor list combined familiar fashion brands like Oakley and Fossil with tech names like Sony, Charmed Technology and the MIT Media Laboratory.
The event’s latex-clad emcee and founder, Isa Gordon, referred to herself as the “cyborg host” and read her lines from a head-mounted teleprompt running a Microsoft operating system. The device, which rested over one eye like a pirate patch, crashed several times during the show, then died mid-show when batteries ran out, requiring a return to paper scripts.
Wearable Environmental Information Networks of Japan, or WIN, showed several notable designs, including Report-the-World, a get-up designed for future stealth journalists. A retro trench coat hides 10 hidden cameras for capturing 360-degree panoramic images. The front pocket holds a small computer, a ring-embedded speaker transmits location-based audio instructions, and a head-mounted display is stylishly encrusted with Swarovski crystals, like an electric tiara. Continue