Developed by MIT student Nadya Peek, Caché 2.0 is an interactive garment that translates online voyeurism into a physical reaction in the real world. The wearable itself is linked to a website containing fragmented images of her body. When a user clicks on an image, a signal is sent to the garment via bluetooth and the corresponding body part makes a clicking sound.
Website communicates with garment via bluetooth
Piezo transducers used in dress as actuators
Below is a description of the concept driving the piece: Our bodies continue beyond our flesh and bones. Humans have constantly augmented their bodies with tools like clothing or automobiles, and now our bodies are also extending into virtual space. An identity includes online identity, extending from cell phones and laptops into cyberspace. How do we regard our selves when the boundary between self and world is fading? Caché is a project that aims to extend online gaze into real space. When a photograph of a body is viewed online, it manifests the gaze offline by means of sound localised on the body. The user knows exactly when and where they are being seen. How does revealing online activity affect the wearer? If data is neutral and equally accessible, how do we distinguish between personal space and neutral grounds? I find the idea of being physically alerted/reminded that I’m being “watched” online rather amusing. This project plays on both the voyeurism and narcissism of our culture. Would I be shocked to discover that the virtual narrative of my life is continuously being consumed by relative strangers throughout the day? Would I get worried when dress stops ticking? In addition, the wearable works with any image (annotated with corresponding body part) that Nadya places on her blog. Ideally, this application would be used on other sites such as facebook and flckr. Beyond the fascinating socio-cultural commentary brought into light by this project, I’d like to point out some interesting technical innovations. In order to make the non-stretch conductive fabric “stretchy”, Nadya laser cut patterns into the conductive fabric itself giving it the flexibility to be stretched with the jersey material she used for the dress.
Patterns cut into conductive fabric allowing it to stretch
Snaps used to attach electronics to garment
You can find more images of her project and process on her flckr set.