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Sophia Brueckner at ACM IoT 2017


Stamps Assistant Professor Sophia Brueckner will be exhibiting the Embodisuit, a collaboration with London fashion designer Rachel Freire, at ACM IoT 2017 in Linz, Austria.

Technology is not neutral. We’re inside of what we make, and it’s inside of us. We’re living in a world of connections — and it matters which ones get made and unmade.” 

—Donna J. Haraway, A Cyborg Manifesto”, 1991

A collaboration between Sophia Brueckner and Rachel Freire, the Embodisuit allows its wearer to map personally chosen signals from an IoT platform to physical sensations on their body. The wearer customizes the garment with haptic modules attached by snaps to create sensations of heat, cold, vibration, and more. These sensations can be constant or infrequent, subtle or jarring, singular or grouped, and they are entirely configurable by the wearer for both practical and poetic purposes. The Embodisuit is meant to be worn underneath your clothing like lingerie and is designed for everyday wear. The haptic sensations are felt by you alone and not seen by others. 

In addition to showcasing novel e‑textile innovations, the Embodisuit demonstrates the potential of the application of embodied cognition to the design of wearable technologies. Knowledge can experienced ambiently without necessitating the interpretation of symbols by the conscious mind. Experiencing information through the body is more natural and efficient but also affords opportunities for greater imagination and meaning-making. The suit empowers the wearer to reconfigure the boundaries of their self tying them to the people, places, and things that are important to them. It both critiques and offers an alternative to current trends in wearable technology. Challenging the assumptions of the Quantified Self, the Embodisuit is a garment of resistance. Instead of harvesting data from the wearer to be sent elsewhere, it allows the wearer to take data in through the skin. 

The Embodisuit is a highly flexible, modular platform that can be reconfigured into other wearable forms as well as utilized by other artists and researchers. We hope to inspire people to design and consume technology more mindfully, with greater awareness of embodied cognition and issues of power. We envision the Embodisuit as a way to rebalance our data ecosystems, taking back control of the configuration of our boundaries and the direction of our cyborg evolution. Furthermore, we hypothesize that by changing the way people live with data, it will change the type of data that people create. 

The rapid advancement and ubiquitous penetration of mobile network, web based information creation and sharing, and software defined networking technology have been enabling sensing, predicting and controlling of physical world with information technology. Every business process can be empowered, and therefore, various industries redesign their business models and processes along Internet of Things (IoT) paradigm. To maximize the social and economic benefit of the technology, issues of interoperability, mashing up data, developing open platforms and standardization across technology layers have to be addressed.

Pervasive connectivity, smart devices and demand for data testify to an IoT that will continue to grow by leaps and bounds. Computing power is dropping in price while new sensors are being developed and incorporated into everyday objects, and as people buy into IoT technology, economies of scale lend themselves to the creation of ever more data-centric businesses. Instrumenting and connecting devices has massive potential to deliver value, but there is need for a coordinated effort when rolling out the next generation of self-reporting paradigms. With the strong supports from industry and academia the international conference on Internet of Things has become the premier gathering place for visionary, academic researchers and practitioners around IoT. The 7th International Conference on the Internet of Things (IoT 2017), building on the success of its predecessors since 2008, is the premier forum for such efforts, to share, discuss and witness cutting edge research in all areas of development for the Internet of Things.”


The 7th International Conference on the Internet of Things (IoT 2017) will take place October 22 – 25, 2017 in Linz, Austria.