People often ask me why wearable technology matters; perhaps the assumption being that putting blinky lights on an outfit might be a cool fad, but it doesn’t go much beyond that. Well, that’s not the whole story by far!
We are currently engaged in a mobile technology revolution, but as we are also in a time of exponential technology advancement it means that the next revolution is just around the corner. There have been advancements in processing power, reductions in size, improvements in power consumption and innovations in battery technology – all of these things converging means that technology as we know it will begin to disappear, both in physical size and interface; and by doing so it will begin to integrate seamlessly and invisibly into our lives. Even now computing is shifting away from ‘devices’ and into everyday objects, and equipped with sensors these objects are beginning to gather information and provide value to our lives.
Alongside the disruption of computing we’re seeing huge changes in materials – 3d printing is happening on a micrometer scale allowing for the creation of incredibly detailed weaving of plastics and metals, and many new futuristic and meta-materials are on the horizon as well – everything from light as air insulators like aerogels to products that bend light around objects.
The most amazing thing of all is that these advancements are happening at once, converging on us from all directions which will inevitably lead to huge changes in the way we live and interact with the world around us.
Here’s a great video of designer Laura Dempsey’s piece, modeled by the always graceful Sara Bella! http://vimeo.com/62585630
And 10 new materials, coming to you from the future! http://lifeboat.com/ex/10.futuristic.materials