What will the future look like? Cyborgs? Androids? Hovercrafts? ID chip embedded in your wrist? What most people don’t think about is what will we be wearing in the future? Cloths that get warmer in a cold breeze, a dress that changes color to match a scarf, a bike helmet that calls for help if you get into an accident.
The future may be coming faster than we think because these gadgets already exist thanks to many people including Juan Hinestroza, and Becky Stern.
Juan Hinestroza is the associate professor of fiber science at Cornell University in Ithaca. He makes cotton “behave in ways witch it does not usually behave” creating cotton that can kill bacteria, conduct electricity, change color, sense gasses. He even has a pair of pants that charges your phone in when you put it in your pocket. His ultimate goal is to make cloths that keep themselves clean and not be able to stain.
Becky Stern is director of wearable electronics at Adafruit industries in New York. She makes tutorials so that people can make their own wearable electronics at home with parts and sensors made easily available mainly because of the Smartphone industry. She has created dozens of projects including a hat that lights up when you are talking, a tie that lights up when you are talking, a purse with conductive Velcro that lights up when it’s open, and a hat that reminds you to put on sunscreen or can act like a timer for any other reason. What will happen if a robot apocalypse happens? Adafruit will get rich with all the people buying their shirts that make it so that heat sensors can’t sense your body heat. My favorite is a RFID tag in nail polish so that the phone unlocks when you pick it up. The ultimate prank: a jacket that, when you chose, will turn off all of the TVs in a restaurant or where ever else you would like! It’s name? The TV be gone.
To listen to recording go to http://www.sciencefriday.com/playlist/#play/segment/9481