I’m an information scientist with a background in human-centered multimedia and currently working as an e-commerce stylist. For my bachelor thesis I did a conceptual design for a wearable system for musicians on the road and for my master I did research on textile parameters. In my free time I like to gain more practical experience through workshops as this was missing during my studies and follow lectures to remain knoknowledgeable on the relevant topics.
Short version: bachelor thesis video shown at the CHI Conference 2012
Long version: Bachelor thesis presentation at British HCI Conference 2011 Workshop – When words fail what can Music Interaction tell us about HCI?
Bachelor thesis download link:
YOUR FAILED PROJECT
The project was carried out as part of my graduation thesis at the University of Amsterdam. I studied information science of which wearables is one example of an information system. Since this research was carried out from an academic point of view the focus was more on functionality than design. The reason for examining the potential of wearables was to look for alternative approaches of interactive information systems. To step away from the desktop, laptop and mobile applications.
At the beginning of the project this was not the intent. Halfway through the project my supervisor saw the potential for submitting it to an HCI workshop and later on also to enter the HCI video competition. Unfortunately I could not attend neither two events, but was represented by my supervisor at the HCI workshop.
I was inspired by my immediate surroundings. As most of my friends are musicians and living in the Netherlands and always travelling with the train and their music gear, I wondered how they would capture the very beginning of a song, the inspirational stage. A musical idea can strike at any time, but it might not be very convenient to take out all the gear and make a recording. Therefore I decided to look at the potential of wearables since a garment is something we always have on us.
I proposed a wearable support system for musicians on the move, called Boogynoma, to solve this problem. First I looked at the current situations of musicians on the move to come up with a design solution. Subsequently a pre-study analysis was carried out to define the requirements for the functionalities of the wearable support system. As such a design for the system was carried out. This consisted of a mock up prototype of the wearable music shirt and an interactive belt.
other (describe) it was an attempt to showcase the potential of a wearable system
The project failed in the sense that it is merely a conceptual depiction of how the system should work in reality. It was an attempt to illustrate the potential of this wearable system if it would be fully functional. Reasons for failure were time constraints and no budget available at that time for such projects.
After my graduation the project came to a definite end. For my master’s project I could have continued with this project and make an actual working system, but again I bumped into budget restraints and decided to do some research in fashion technology and textile parameters.
It gave me a lot to think about, especially all the aspects you have to take into account when designing on the body and the interactions that go with it. It also gave me a push to keep doing research in my free time and stay informed on the newest developments in the wearables field. I feel I still miss relevant design and programming skills when it comes to join projects, since I’m not exactly a fashion designer or a programmer. In order to succeed one must also have hands-on experience.
I like the fact that it can serve as a wearable information system, which is pushing human interaction out of the box. It also provides instant access and results as it is worn close to the body. It also supports the idea of pervasive computing that technology is always with you or around you.
It is interesting as there are versatile fields of application, for example fashion, sports, entertainment and healthcare. This means that we all have to work together to achieve tangible results and allows for interdisciplinarity.
As technology is fast-paced and computer parts are getting smaller research should be carried out on new materials, reactive materials and the integration of sensors into clothing. Therefore not only stitch on a sensor or a LED on a fabric, but actually make the garment reactive by incorporating technology in the fibers.