Hello world!

Posted by BMadmin on Thursday Sep 13, 2007 Under Uncategorized

Here is my 4th Year Production Blog

Now I’m going to bed.

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Week 2 Update

Posted by BMadmin on Friday Sep 14, 2007 Under Uncategorized

The Plan:To make a wearable, mobile technology outfit. Or in short, to become a cyborg.

The Reason: From my observations mobile technology (like Ipods and Bluetooth Earpieces, etc.) has lead to people becoming more isolated in public situations.

Over the summer I went to a Daft Punk concert wearing my T-Qualizer t-shirt and people went crazy for it! One stranger bought be a beer, a young asian girl on ecstasy came up and started touching my shirt and smiling at me and lots and lots of people came up to ask me where I got the shirt, how much they loved it, etc.

So my plan is to make some wearable mobile technology that would encourage people to interact with me and vice versa.

Possible Components:

  • Partial Face Mask with Voice Modulator
  • Metallic Left Arm for Power Storage
  • Vest or Webbing for LED or LCD displays
  • Audio Input/Output
  • Electroluminescent Fiber

My Inspirations:

Daft Punk
Steve Mann
The T-Qualizer
Neill Blomkamp
Ghost in the Shell

This week I met with Dave, Lila and Kathleen and everyone seems to be on board with my project.

  • Dave suggested that I focus on aesthetics, depending on my budget I can use technologies to make everything look neat and presentable. I should learn how people interact with Steve Mann and think about what kind of experience I want to create.
  • I am waiting from Lila to hear about a faculty member at Ryerson that works with wearable technologies.
  • Kathleen suggested I investigate Joey Berzowska and the lecture she gave at Ryerson last year. She also suggested I get in contact with some students from the Fashion Faculty to collaborate on some of the clothing/wearable components.
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Week 3 Progress

Posted by BMadmin on Friday Sep 21, 2007 Under Uncategorized

My Draft Proposal is finished and now I have to move foward with my research and solidify my project.I came up with series of questions that I need to address with this project:What is the purpose and function of each component?

For the purposes of the show, should I have a documentation or resting station, or have the project entirely mobile?
What kind of electronics to use?
How much will it cost?
How will I construct the systems, how long will it take?

What does it look like?
How will it fit / integrate with the electronics
Will it fit / work with common clothing?

Lila said something interesting in class today, that ‘Technology changes our behavior.’ This is something I need to keep in mind while working on this project.

Read More

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Week 4 Updates

Posted by BMadmin on Tuesday Sep 25, 2007 Under Uncategorized

Good News! Today my Project got Green Lighted!

Last week I sent out a mass e-mail to the students in the Fashion school and I got a couple of replies. I’ve met with a couple of the student and discussed what I am looking for and what possible collaboration we could accomplish. I’m just waiting to hear back from them to see if this will be possible.

From my experience and research I belive we are really on the cusp of a huge explosion into wearable technology as both fashion and function. Some articles that come to mind are:
Interactive Billboard
The Invisibility Cloak
Photonic Textiles

I have been reading more about Wearable Computers and have found some interesting articles. I have also been making my way through Steve Mann’s book ‘Cyborg’ when I have time to get some ideas and inspirations.


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Week 5 Research and Progress

Posted by BMadmin on Monday Oct 1, 2007 Under Uncategorized

Last week I finished Steve Mann’s ‘Cyborg’ and was really interested by some of his ideas and his experiences in being a cyborg. I find that Mann is definitely anti-surveillance and very skeptical of corporate and government controls. Definitely the views held by any good cyberpunk!

Anyway, I watched through the Kodak Lecture by Joanna Berzowska and got some good ideas about what is going on in the wearables field right now and some good theory related to fashion and technology.

  • Clothing and Language were developed as we developed into humans
  • Clothing is a historic signifier of wealth, status, profession, identity, etc. It is our most common personal expression

Most wearable technology in the area of media seems to be steered towards interconnecting consumer electronics and is not really doing much to counteract the erosion of physical and social contact.

I’ve been sending out e-mails to Steve Mann, Deb Fels, Joey Berzowska, etc. to get in contact with them and get some help and feedback on my project. I want to be sure I’m not doing something already done and something that is way above my time and skills. Read More

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A short consideration

Posted by BMadmin on Tuesday Oct 2, 2007 Under Uncategorized

Since doing a lot of research about wearable technology, I’ve come to the conclusion that my project needs a little more edge.

The first thing that came to mind is maybe building or using a cellphone RF frequency jammer. The problem with this is they are veryillegal. If caught I could get a maximum $5,000 fine and 1 year in jail, which the idea of jail isn’t a promising aspect, but I’m not sure I can risk my immediate future on something like that.

Read More

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Week 6

Posted by BMadmin on Tuesday Oct 9, 2007 Under Uncategorized

Holy crap! A new wi-fi wearable has hit the market!

Unfortunately it looks like my collaboration with the fashion students will not be possible, since my project doesn’t really fit into their criteria or their own project timelines. So after I finalize my determination on what technology I will be using I will focus again on the appearance and possibilities for making my wearable.

I was speaking to a friend of mine the other day about my project and what the latest concept / developments were. I wanted to do something maybe a little edgy and disruptive, but after discovering how illegal it was and discussing the fact that even being disruptive or annoying wouldn’t really be a good way to achieved my idea of using mobile technology for public interaction.  We talked about the difference between my rural life experience and her life experience growing up in the city; People in the city choose to insulate themselves with a cellphone/ipods because they don’t wish to be harassed by strangers, promotors or beggars.

Like discussed in Georg Simmel’s “The Metropolis and Mental Life”, the 7th section deals with the mental attitude of people who live in the city. “Partly this psychological fact, partly the right to distrust which men have in the face of the touch-and-go elements of metropolitan life, necessitates our reserve.” So in order to overcome the technological barriers that mobile technology offers, I must first over come the social conditioning of the average city dweller.

All of this has brought me to my latest concept to pull off this project. Which is to literally become the medium of mobile  technology.

I could rig up a system where people could hook up thier cells/ipods/whatever to my wearable system and use them ‘off’ of me.

The second idea is that I would already have those devices embedded in a wearable system and people could control how they were used. (eg. Someone could make a phone call by talking at/through me and I’d have mics and speakers rigged up) I could also have some cosmetic lighting effects that would occur depending on the level or length of interaction.

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Week 7 – Running Mann

Posted by BMadmin on Tuesday Oct 16, 2007 Under Uncategorized

I posted my Proposal on Friday

I’m still trying to set up a meeting with Steve Mann, with not very much luck so far 🙁
I’ve got a few more leads to try, a lot of people know him, but he’s a hard guy to get ahold of! Hopefully one of them comes through and I can interview him for my Artist Interview.

I met with Steve Daniels today and got some really good input about my project and how I should start going about my prototyping, etc. He also told me to consider how this project would go off as a performative piece since I am interacting with people socially. I also have to consider more deeply why I want to include both musical and communication components of the project.

I also met wit Deb Fels and got to see some of the interesting stuff she is working on for deaf people. She also forwarded me to a guy by the name of Thad Starner who does Cyborg work down at Georgia Tech. So I’ve sent an e-mail down to him as well to get some possible feedback from him as well.

Lastly I hit on the idea of making my wearable look and work sort of similar to Soundwave from Transformers

I think it would be kind of cool to integrate the old tape ejector style into a holding place for an mp3 player.

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Week 8 – Great Week!

Posted by BMadmin on Monday Oct 29, 2007 Under Uncategorized

I was so busy last week that I didn’t really have time to update the ole’ project blog. First and Foremost is I finally got a hold of Steve Mann!!!

From: Steve Mann
Date: October 23, 2007 3:51:39 PM EDT (CA)
Subject: Cyborg; Intelligent Image Processing, etc..

Thank you for your interest in my work and writings
(it’s great that you found Cyborg to be of interest;
there’s some metadata in http://wearcam.org/cyborg.htm)

In reference to Kodak Lecture series… I gave a Kodak
Lecture at Ryerson some years ago (I’m not sure if
there’s any video of the lecture around Ryerson, but
maybe you can find it if there is…).

Since you’re also looking at specific implementation
details you might find my other book,
to be of interest as well…

Additionally, Google search on “sousveillance”
will give you some updates on recent work on
surveillance and sousveillance and the relation
between them, etc..

You might also want to join our community of more
than 20,000 “cyborgs” at http://glogger.mobi

Easiest way, if you don’t have a wearable cameraphone
(EyeTap, http://eyetap.org) yet is to join using a
standard hand-held cameraphone, so you get an idea
what the lifestyle is like, etc..

There’s various other papers, like:

which may be of interest.

Maybe we can do an interview over ‘glogger (over cyborgspace),
as participation in ‘glogger is a new and interesting way
of interacting.

Quite different from a phone interview;
more existential in some sense.

Another good contact at Rye is ANV (Anastasios
Venetsanopoulos). He’s a real genius polymath
type, with a strong interest in imaging as well
as fine-arts and fundamental philosophical
questions in the fine-arts.

Best regards,

So that was really exciting, I then went on to set-up a meeting with Steve
I’m away, and I’ll also soon be away from email (unreachable)
but I’ll still be checking my ‘glog (http://glogger.mobi)
so you can continue to reach me through the ‘glog.

Meanwhile, if you need to interview someone immediately,
Raymond Lo, one of my students, might be able to be
interviewed and could explain ‘glogger and our cyborglogging

Best regards,

So yeah, that’s about where I am with that. I am trying to set up a meeting with Raymond and see where I can go from there. I will have to draw up a list of questions and hopefully between Raymond and Steve I can get enough ideas and experience to move forward with my project and presentation.

Secondly as just as exciting was that on Wednesday I met with my Artist/Illustrator friend Kent Burles. He has worked on a number of Sci-fi and Fantasy roleplaying games and he is helping me visualize my project with some illustrations. We talked about what my project is about, how it works and the influences behind it. He will be a great addition to add the element of fantasy into my project, whereas other sources have been mostly mainly artistic and scientific.

I can’t wait to see what he comes up with!

I also met with Lila and she thought my Proposal was fairly well done, just that I should update it with more positive language and make a few corrections.

So overall a very productive week! I want to get rolling on my Prototype soon, so hopefully Sony-Ericsson will come through with a few phones I can have to experiment with. I have been in touch with the Ericsson Montreal office and they have put me in touch with the Sony-Ericsson office here in Toronto.

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Week 9

Posted by BMadmin on Friday Nov 2, 2007 Under Uncategorized

This week I met with Raymond Lo, he is currently heading up the Glogger project. We talked about cellphones and wearable computing and I got some good suggestions and references for my project!

I’ve set up my own glogger, so you can check the feed here:

Live Glogger ImageLive Glogger ImageLive Glogger ImageLive Glogger ImageLive Glogger ImageLive Glogger ImageLive Glogger ImageLive Glogger Image

In the news, there was a few cool articles this week that I found really interesting. First was the British Invisibility Camouflage Tank which uses similar technology to the Invisibility Cloak being made in Japan. The second is the Australian Army Electric Shirt which can be used to store and provide electric energy, really cool idea I think!

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