[-empyre-] wearable technology

Johannes Birringer Johannes.Birringer at brunel.ac.uk
Mon Feb 3 06:31:48 EST 2014

dear all
it would have been interesting to have more debate on the last week topic (on wearables) and also its connection to the discussion in the week's before, I got the impression that there was not a deeper flow in the conversation, nor did the invited participants or the debate moderators seem to look for the links, seams, or connecting glitches in the threads we posted; 
I was very skeptical of this notion of a "same sleek digital look" , and tried to question it - and yes, Rafael, the discussion could have been raising many additional questions indeed, and I personally don't think there is such a thing as a digital look in performance art or everyday life, and – as Alan Sondheim remarked – nor is there one in VR.     It would be great if Susan Ryan, Sarah Hamilton,  and Jo Berzowska (did I miss her postings?) were to continue responding and others who work with wearables / body-worn technologies and interfaces join in...

Well, Rafael, as you pose the idea I think you have observed behaviors, "When, where and what are they doing" - can you tell us what struck you?  what is a construction of the self with wearables? 
I agree it would help to talk about what performers (in interactive art or stage work) or users do, and whether wearables have in fact meant any change or different perception on the futility of interactive art that I suggested earlier in the discussion. 

For us at the DAP-Lab, the wearables pose a particular, and particularly interesting, movement/choreographic restriction on focus (change of focus), mobility, acceleration, dynamics and velocity  that we tried to use to our advantage, within the narrative performance frame of the character who wears the costumes and thus "embodies" it,  understanding the restriction (for example of a wearable object/instrument on/in the clothes or with the costumes) as a challenge to slow down and work with low resolution or different resolution of the movement character, also examining of course how the wearable is experience sensually and sensorily, and what you communicate to those close by, who also perceive or feel (in terms of the haptic or tactile sonority of the sounding garments Michèle Danjoux creates) particular resonances of the worn, and its spatial and auditory externalization....

Johannes Birringer

[Rafael schreibt]
>Dear all,

there are at least two aspects of wearable technology that might raise interesting questions. The first is about the aesthetics of what was described here as a "digital look". The second is about the practices, what users actually do and maybe more important what they do not do.

To the first I shortly ask how long the uniform of digital devices will hold when the development of smaller and more integrated devices continues. Think about the line smartphone, smartwatch, smartglass. Maybe another question is how people integrate these devices into the construction of the self with clothing.
To the second, well, this is particularly interesting to me as I study role play practices with augmented reality devices. How do people actually use these devices in everyday life or for recreational purposes? When, where and what are they doing what they do?>>

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