processors embedded in space suits could one day display
info on the inside of an astronaut's helmet.
wearable computer might become the next electronic gadget
you can't live without - like your laptop, cell phone and
PDA before it. Researchers at MIT's Media Lab have been wearing
their computers since the mid-1980's, when Steven Mann's wearable
computer looked like alien head -gear and caused unsuspecting
passers-by to cross the street to avoid him.
By 1995, when Alan last checked in with the wearables group,
the technology was almost worth the bulk and burden. Helmet-mounted
cameras relayed images and information to the web, and Mann's
underwear could wirelessly control his dorm room's thermostat.
computer parts become cheaper and smaller, wearable computers
will become more fashionable.
"Wearables," Alan revisits the group of researchers to see
what kind of progress they've made. Rich DeVaul's computerized
jacket - a network of CPU's, hard drives, sensors and wireless
cards - is more powerful than the average desktop computer.
When Alan tries it on, he finds that the jacket, via a glasses-mounted
screen, can tell him who he is talking to, help him navigate
the lab, even remind him of events on his daily calendar.
This type of technology could one day be as useful to an astronaut
as to a CEO.
we're sure Brian Clarkson will never forget his conversation
with Alan - but if he does, he can just rewind. Using his
wearable computer, Clarkson recorded every waking moment of
his last hundred days. Although he concedes the life of a
grad student is full of repetition and routine, Clarkson can
also show Alan at least one extraordinary moment - the moment
Clarkson met the woman who is now his girlfriend. Instant
nostalgia. Tell us what you think. (LINK to mail bag page)
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