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Philips Shows Light Emitting Clothing 191

Paul Cobbaut writes "From Physorg: Philips Research intends to impress the visitors at this year's IFA (Internationale Funkausstellung) with a world-first demonstration of promotional jackets and furniture featuring its innovative Lumalive technology. Lumalive textiles make it possible to create fabrics that carry dynamic advertisements, graphics and constantly changing color surfaces. Here is the Philips Press Release." Obviously, all Devo videos will need to be reshot using this valuabe new technology advance.
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Philips Shows Light Emitting Clothing

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  • by mgabrys_sf ( 951552 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @08:01AM (#15992994) Journal
    The possibilities for the PRON industry abound.

    Now they can show it all before they take it all off.
  • Tron Suit (Score:5, Funny)

    by tompatman ( 936656 ) <tompatman@gmail.com> on Monday August 28, 2006 @08:01AM (#15992995)
    Sweet! Now I can build the perfect Tron suit that I always dreamed of! Hopefully, no one will think I'm weird when I wear it to work...
  • Light pollution (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ms1234 ( 211056 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @08:05AM (#15993002)
    Like there is not already too much light pollution in the world. And advertisment .. and lightboards .. and .. and ...
  • by Shivetya ( 243324 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @08:08AM (#15993011) Homepage Journal
    Oooh, there is one big market waiting for this. Who cares about advertising, visibility is even more important. Dayling running can be made safer with clothing that shifts geometric patterns and shifting colors. Ads on the clothing could be used to reduce the price so people actually wear it... and if not ads then perhaps some customizable imagery would be good to.

    Still, the safety aspects are hard to ignore with stuff like this. If the power use is low enough then self lighting (pulsing/blinking) emergency gear would be another great application (think of aircraft seats, lifevests, etc). Get lost in the woods then at night a tent or even your jacket if woven with this material could be set to flash etc.

    • ...or take it to the other end of the spectrum: add a camera (in the lapel or somewhere) and you've got yourself perfect camouflage every time.
    • by otie ( 915090 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @08:22AM (#15993063)
      Ads on the clothing could be used to reduce the price so people actually wear it...
      Oh please. They'll charge you more for the privilege of wearing their adverts.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by kfg ( 145172 ) *
        Safety yellow bike jersey: $20

        Black bike shorts: $30

        "Official" Cofidis Jesey and shorts: $160

        Getting me to wear Cofidis Jersey: Pricel. . . well, actually; about $50k a year ought to do it.

    • by cHALiTO ( 101461 ) <elchalo&gmail,com> on Monday August 28, 2006 @08:34AM (#15993109) Homepage
      Ads on the clothing could be used to reduce the price so people actually wear it...

      Ehm.. those already exist, and they actually make the clothes *more expensive*. Like, check out the price of a white T-shirt, then go see the price of a white T-shirt with Nike logo on the front... by wearing it in pubilc, you're freely advertising for Nike.. wait.. not freely.. you PAID for it!

      (I know, I know, trademark, status, quality perception. etc etc.. but I still can't stop thinking that when something like this happens, there's something really wrong with this world =P)
      • by hey! ( 33014 )
        Ehm.. those already exist, and they actually make the clothes *more expensive*. Like, check out the price of a white T-shirt, then go see the price of a white T-shirt with Nike logo on the front... by wearing it in pubilc, you're freely advertising for Nike.. wait.. not freely.. you PAID for it!

        Wait though...

        Here is the real deal: they agree to sell you the expensive T-shirt for less than cost, in return for which you agree to let them change some part of the T-shirt, e.g. the logo or the company catch phra
    • by jb_nizet ( 98713 )
      Ads on the clothing could be used to reduce the price so people actually wear it...
      In fact, people are usually paying more to wear clothes with ads: t-shirts with a big Ni*e slogan, sweat-shirts with an Adid*s or Reeb*k logo, etc.
      I'm pretty sure being transformed into a moving light-emitting ad would make lots of people feel super-cool, and they would be ready to pay for that :-(
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Meccanica ( 980734 )

      Ads on the clothing could be used to reduce the price so people actually wear it.

      Oh god. NOOOOOO! I can't stand it... I don't want to see FLASHING! AD! BANNERS! on people!! I got away from them on the internet (firefox + adblock) but there is no way to protect yourself from throngs of joggers wearing DISCOUNT ELECTRONICS and FREE ONLINE GAMBLING etc.... I know, I know, but it's still a terrible idea. Advertising will always want to be flashy and eye-catching in some way. Hopefully people will have enough s

    • by Peldor ( 639336 )
      Ads on the clothing could be used to reduce the price so people actually wear it...

      Are you kidding me? The bigger the ad, the more likely you paid extra for the 'privilege' to wear it. It used to be a 1/2" alligator or polo horse. Now it 6" tall letters that proudly proclaim you shop at GAP or wear Tommy.

      We're walking billboards already. No need to light those billboards up too.

  • by Mille Mots ( 865955 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @08:09AM (#15993013)
    As a bicycle commuter (somewhat rare in this Midwestern, Rust Belt, automotive driven state), I can see where Lumalive would be useful for safety gear. Instead of hanging a handful of 'blinkies' off the back of my bike, my whole back could be one big flashing signal. Perhaps a glowing 'slow moving vehicle' triangle of a square foot or so would be more attention-getting than what doesn't work now (lights, high-contrast clothing, evne high-viz yellow jackets don't help half the time).
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by rjmars97 ( 946970 )
      if you already use reflective vests and the strobe LED lights, it seems the problem is more with the attention span of the drivers than your visibility.
    • by dk-software-engineer ( 980441 ) * on Monday August 28, 2006 @08:45AM (#15993150)
      As a cardriver, I will WANT to hit you, if you are wearing a bright flashing jacket. Blinking LED's are annoying enough. It's not a safety issue. If blinking stuff is safer, LED-lamps is enough. Bicycles are not supposed to blink, you are not an ambulance.
      • by Duhavid ( 677874 )
        Darned if you do, darned if you dont.

        There is a goodly number of cardrivers that just
        dont see cyclists unless you have an extraordinary
        amount of light coming off of you. Broad daylight
        and I have been run off the road by some people.

        Just dont get me started about the woman in the van
        who took the time to tell me that I should not ride
        at night, because her husband was legally blind, and
        could not see me.
    • by MobyDisk ( 75490 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @08:48AM (#15993155) Homepage
      Actually, I think this type of visibility is a bad idea. If you are driving at night, and something has bright flashing lights, the ONLY thing you can see is the flashing lights. Everything that you could see before now becomes invisible, because your eye has to re-adjust to the bright object. Either that, or the bright object burns into your retina and now you can't see anything else. Either way, this makes it more dangerous for the driver.

      Other examples:
      - Near my home there is a school. The added super-bright flashing LEDs onto the standard reflective pederstrian sign. Now, whenever I drive by it at night, I am momentarily blinded just as I approach the school crosswalk.
      - Ever see the school buses that have the strobe lights on top? Not so bad during the day, but on an early cloudy winter morning those things are dangerously bright. It makes me blink twice as much to avoid looking right at them.

      Instead of hanging a handful of 'blinkies' off the back of my bike
      Do yourself a favor: Turn your blinkies around so they shine against your back. This will illuminate you so people see you, rather than shine a light into the driver's eyes. Face the LED lights toward the person on the bike so that the cars see a person on a bike, not "Hey, look at that cool...! "

      Reflectors also work well because they are softer light and they only reflect what is sent out.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by MisterBates ( 880051 )
        I agree with you to some extent however, there are some signs that merely use retrofreflectivity that can be too bright; No LED's required. It is not always the case that the signs are blindingly bright that you find yourself squinting, rather they are too bright for their surroundings. Like trying to find extrasolar planets. It's not that a particular star is blindingly bright to look at through a telescope, but it is too bright to see any surrounding objects.

        In looking at the photo attached to the pre
    • People tend to drive the direction they're looking.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Target_fixation [wikipedia.org]

  • Like In Snow Crash (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Watson Ladd ( 955755 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @08:10AM (#15993017)
    You could have windbreakers with the name of a gang on them that turn black on command. Or suits that dazzle everyone letting you escape. Active camaflauge. There are so many uses of this technology.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by SageMusings ( 463344 )
      Better still,

      You can wire your jacket to your personal GPS and have the jacket change gang colors depending on the neighborhood you just entered. Imagine a gothic-text MS-13 sprawled across you back...... ...look it up....
  • Feedback? (Score:2, Funny)

    by slackarse ( 875650 )
    Can we get this clothing to accept user input? I've always wanted to play pacman on my chest. 2 player battleship anyone, I play my front, you play my back?
  • But it can be a very cool tech.

    Imagine these clothes are sold with a wireless interface in the future, which IMHO is a reasonable idea, geeks in school could learn to hack them and write "kick me" on the back of the violent kids while staying at safe distance.
  • They're not alone (Score:5, Informative)

    by inputsprocket ( 585963 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @08:13AM (#15993029)
    They're not alone - try Luminex [luminex.it] for fibre optic threads in clothes and Elekson [eleksen.com] for pressure sensitive fabrics....
    • Anyone else making fiberoptic imaging clothing? The Luminex looks cool, but it's just abstract "effects" lighting.
  • Slashdot T-Shirts!!!

    Imagine proudly advertising to the entire world that you are a complete nerd! Yay! ;-)
    • I think we're looking at * T-shirts, not specifically /. T-shirts. Because we can change the images, why would we let the logo-owner "own" the shirt, limiting which logo we can display?

      One shirt to display them all, one T-shirt to bind them, one T-shirt to play them all, and in the darkness remind them.
    • Imagine proudly advertising to the entire world that you are a complete nerd! Yay! ;-)

      I suspect most people around here are looking for ways of NOT advertising the fact that they are complete Nerds.

      It's hiding that fact that's difficult. ;-)
  • Wow... (Score:3, Funny)

    by Jugalator ( 259273 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @08:17AM (#15993045) Journal
    That guy with a glowing @ on his back looks so hip, like he's totally part of the Internet Revolution!
  • I can't wait for this - google can now give it away as Adword supprted clothing.

    I think I'm going to patent "Pay per Prod" quickly.

  • ....I can finally get to work on my teletubbies Hallowe'en costume, complete with working belly screen?

    Now, I wonder where I can find stock footage of that monk incinerating himself in protest from the Vietnam Conflict?
  • Sweet! (Score:2, Funny)

    by Gryle ( 933382 )
    I predict bed-sheets with built-in mood-lighting.
  • Now you don't have to waste time getting your friends to apply text to your cloating with post-it notes:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/87457200@N00/22709103 7/ [flickr.com]

  • Marketing disaster (Score:3, Insightful)

    by morie ( 227571 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @08:37AM (#15993118) Homepage
    Leave it to Philips to invent some great technology and then blow the marketing. They have a great history of doing that.

    Come on, if even slashdot can come up with applications that are far more marketable then "advertise on my back", why can't Philips ?
  • Back in the mid 90's Prof. Thad Starner and some of his grad students at MIT did a jacket like this for visual feedback as a part of the wearable computing research they were doing.

    an array of LED's just below the outer shell so they shine through, exactly like how they did it. But they were also using conductive threads as well as other tech that made it not only feedback but to control it by touching certian embroidered spots composed of the conductive thread as a sewn on keypad.

  • Burning man and burners will be the largest consumers of this product. Just as they are curntly the largest group of users of LiveWire.

    (Burning man rocks -- I wish I could go this year, but I can't make it.)

  • Now, to add some photosensitive materials, and you get a kick butt game of laser tag that can show where its been hit.
  • by thewiz ( 24994 ) * on Monday August 28, 2006 @09:16AM (#15993286)
    On how long it will take for someone to dress-up in a glowing green outfit and pretend to be an alien?

    I'd say about 5 minutes.
  • Shirt Hack (Score:2, Funny)

    by NeonDemon ( 967806 )
    Its going to be great to see a virus spreading though your local GAP.
  • Blah. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Rob T Firefly ( 844560 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @09:17AM (#15993290) Homepage Journal
    But get in on it quick, because as soon as this blows up, people will tune it out. The older folks might still remember when lettering on a t-shirt was unusual enough for a second glance from anyone on the street, but how many people pay attention to what strangers are sporting on t-shirts these days?

    Times Square's glitzy neon lights were revolutionary in its day, but information overloads like that are quickly tuned out to the point where I would guess the percentage of people who work or live nearby who could actually name more than three or four Times Square ads from memory to be very low. As is all I can pull off the top of my head are Coca-cola and the big steamy Cup-O-Noodles, even though I've taken regular walks through the area for roughly 12 years.
    Fabrics like drapes, cushions or sofa coverings become active when they illuminate in order to enhance the observer's mood and positively influence his/her behavior.
    Because nothing positively enhances my mood like tons of stupid blinking flashing crap made to distract me and sell me things.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Peredur ( 597190 )
      Dunno about that. Every time I see a female walking about with "These are Real" on her shirt, I always look twice.

    • by mgblst ( 80109 )
      but how many people pay attention to what strangers are sporting on t-shirts these days?

      Are you kidding me. What better excuse do you need to look a girls brests than if she has something written on them. One of the greatest invention for men since sunglasses. All hail the tshirt writers!
  • by hummdinger02 ( 997602 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @09:20AM (#15993305)
    The thing that concerns me most about this would be the potential application in reviving disco. Then comes roller disco and then Kryogenics is used to bring back the decesed members of the Gibb family. AND IT ALL STARTS with the sequins for the digital age.
  • -for the wave of UFO sightings
  • If I... (Score:2, Interesting)

    have to wear a fat winter vest-jacket to have a @ on my back, I am totally out.

    A complete color change capacity would be great, though. No more shopping for the perfect tie to match each suit. Just think about it matching hard enough and ....voila!

  • Camo (Score:2, Insightful)

    by aod7br ( 573614 )
    I think the best use for this would be camouflage. Imagine a cloth equipped with a pocket cam and CPU that tries to mimick the enviroment. Of course it would work better if it had passive lighting (like electronic paper).
  • by Aceticon ( 140883 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @10:43AM (#15993751)
    This will revolutionize the "I'm with stupid" t-shirt industry - now the arrow can always point in the right direction
  • Of course this solves the problem with being asked to increase the amount of flare. If ever confronted, you would just have to connect your vest and update to include more. To futher increase the tackiness: include the menu on the vest as well.
  • by E++99 ( 880734 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @11:38AM (#15994076) Homepage
    Shouldn't these people have been working on the cure for the common cold? Or legos that are don't get stuck together as badly, or something else?
    • by cr0sh ( 43134 )
      Avoiding the common cold is fairly easy - what makes it difficult for most of us is the fact that most people have rug rats and go to work. Basically, to avoid the common cold - stay away from others who have it, wash your hands regularly (and use one of those anti-germ hand sanitizers after touching common surfaces, like doorknobs, if you are really paranoid), keep your environment clean (you wouldn't believe how crappy some people live - absolute squaller, I have seen - yet they don't understand why they
  • Used to see gear like that at raves back in the 1990s. "E-shirts" (t-shirts with electroluminescent panels displaying changing patterns) are still available [psychedelicrainbow.com]. And who could forget the LCD belt buckle. [clubthings.com] Nobody wears that stuff any more, of course.
  • The very first application they mention in the article is advertising. That should come as no surprise based on how many idiots are more than willing to walk around like billboards for clothing companies. But... this is far worse. Can you imagine how many stupid people will jump at the chance to run around with the Sprint or Verizon logos and accompanying video ads playing non-stop on their clothes just to get "free" minutes or a "free" phone? Or what about "free" DSL, Satellite or Cable? Where is the
  • This is ancient history. I have been doing this type of stuff for years.

  • "The binocular guy nods, reaches up with one hand and presses a lapel switch. The next time he turns around, a word is written across his back in neon green electropigment: MAFIA. The older guy turns away; his windbreaker says the same thing. Hiro turns around in the middle of the gangplank. There are twenty crew members in plain sight all around him. Suddenly, their black windbreakers all say, MAFIA. Suddenly, they are all armed."
  • What kind (Score:3, Insightful)

    by kahrytan ( 913147 ) on Monday August 28, 2006 @01:15PM (#15994825)
    The article forgets to tell us WHAT KIND OF LED? I highly doubt it is an actual LED since they are to big. If it's fully integrated into the fabric then it could be a Organic LED [wikipedia.org] or PLED [wikipedia.org] (polymer led).

      What do you think the LED is?
  • Lumalive textiles make it possible to create fabrics that carry dynamic advertisements, graphics and constantly changing color surfaces.

    so, i can look forward to a future in which a typical walk through town will involve punching dozens of people in the face as hard as i can?

Where there's a will, there's a relative.