This is a demonstration setup that allows you to plug a variety of resistive textile sensors into a Teensy and either read the sensor values as Serial communication, or midi commands. The textile sensors are designed with their leads ending in two 9mm metal snap fasteners – 1 male, 1 female. This snap connection connects to custom made 2-wire cables that have a mono audio-jack on the other end. The jacks can then plug into four different sockets that read the sensor values. Each jack is wired to an analog pin on the Teensy with a different different range potentiometer as it’s pull-up resistor – 10K, 50K, 100K, 250K.
In a morning, I push a button to start the electric kettle to make a cup of tea, turn on the radio by sliding the on/off switch and turn the knob to tune into the radio station I want to listen to. I open my laptop, slide my finger on the touch pad to open my mail software and type on the keyboard to answer an email that just came in…
A familiar scene many of us experience. We are constantly interacting with technology without thinking too much about it. Have you ever thought about why we interact the way we do? Could the switch, buttons and knobs made in different ways with different materials that our whole experience of interacting with technology be different? Maybe we do not “push” a button nor “turn” a knob.. but some other way to interact with them.
In this workshop, we will explore the design possibilities of alternative interaction with technology using textile as an example of soft interactive surface. Materiality, tactility and its surface aesthetic creates design language for textile. The choice of textile technique and motif may add social context to it. What can we do when these design language is combined with technology?
We will start with looking at everyday textile materials. How do we interact with them? how are they designed to give us specific aesthetic experiences? Can we design soft interaction with technology that is as rich in its language as this piece of cloth?