Behold, the future of couture. At least according to fashion designer Anouk Wipprecht. The dress is dominated by a 3D printed breastplate topped with an array of robotic spider arms.
The arms are controlled by an Intel Edison development board linked to proximity and respiration sensors which mean that if you approach aggressively you’re likely to receive a spiky response, but if you approach more calmly the dress might react more positively and beckon you closer with smooth, suggestive gestures.
Wipprecht, who has previously designed other exotic creations such as the Synapse and Smoke dresses, worked in collaboration with Intel on the design, build and programming. The dress can differentiate between 12 different states of behavior, measuring not only what is going on around the wearer, but their own reaction to it.
“Fashion and tech are merging at the moment, beyond blinking dresses or cute skirts” she says. “I’m showing how fashion can be thought provoking, something that pushes people to think and share their feelings. Often you see electronic fashion that only bleeps and blinks. I like to think of creating intelligent agents that live with us, on the notion of extremes, in the hope we can find new ways of interfacing with the world around us.”
This dress however has somewhat of a mind of it’s own. “It’s an interface that acts on behalf of the wearer but also considers its own opinion based on the logic and data programmed through social studies and environmental psychology” Wipprecht explains, a worrying development for anyone who approaches the wearer, since whatever their feelings about you, the dress might just decide to give you a spike in the face, like some kind of overprotective robot maiden aunt.
While we are unlikely to see dresses like this on the high Street any time soon, Wipprecht believes that tech infused clothing will certainly have a role in our future, encouraging interaction and moving us away from just staring at screens, saying “As technology crawls closer to the skin we will need to rethink and recreate the relation that we have towards technology. The position that technology has in our society — the role to please us — will get more and more intimate”.
Maybe so, but right now it’s weird and a little bit scarey.
Source: IQ by Intel