'Oops, My Shirt's Out of Batteries': The New World of Wearable Tech

By Megan Garber

Fashion's new frontier involves LED lights, fiberoptic fabrics, and electrified threads.

Things in the world that, at this point, don't run on batteries: love, laughter, unicorns. And that's pretty much it. We are, as a culture, increasingly battery-powered. Rather than simplifying our relationship to our objects -- and rather than conserving electricity -- we're getting more and more clever with what we bring to life with portable power: kids' toys, toothbrushes, razorsmicrowaves, even (!) candles.

So it's logical that our battery mania would extend, eventually, to ... our clothes. And not just to practical inventions like, say, the battery-heated parka. The new frontier of fashion, The New York Times reports, is wearable technology -- powered by LED lights, fiberoptic fabrics, and electrified threads. Which seems both inevitable and inevitably annoying. Ironing your shirt is one thing; imagine having to worry about recharging it.


Images 1 - 3: Adafruit Industries. Images 4-7: Moon Berlin.


This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2012/02/oops-my-shirts-out-of-batteries-the-new-world-of-wearable-tech/253647/