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Why sew smart e-pants? A discussion of wearable computing and electronic textiles

Dr. Tom Martin

March 22, 2014
An interactive session led by Dr. Tom Martin

Professor in the Bradley Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Virginia Tech, with a courtesy appointment in the School of Architecture + Design.
Co-director of the Virginia Tech E-textiles Lab.

  The goal of wearable computing is to provide access to information anytime and anyplace.  But a person wearing a computer should still be able to do what they normally do without the computer slowing them down, making them look funny, or annoying them all the time.   Electronic textiles, or e-textiles, are fabrics that have electronics and networks in the fabric itself.  E-textiles have the possibility to make wearable computers that look and feel like normal clothing.    We will talk about the technologies that make it possible to build wearable computers, some examples of wearable computers and e-textiles, and why anyone would want to wear a computer in the first place.  

Tom Martin is a professor in the Bradley Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Virginia Tech, with a courtesy appointment in the School of Architecture + Design.   He is the co-director of the Virginia Tech E-textiles Lab. He received his Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and his B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Cincinnati.  His research and teaching interests include wearable computing, electronic textiles, and interdisciplinary design teams for pervasive computing.

After the interactive session the students will be escorted by their parents to have lunch and then to the hands-on portion of the event. There the students will enjoy the experience of interacting with various exhibits from the Virginia Tech community.