Wearable electronics deal with clothing and textiles that incorporate computing devices and other electronic technology into their everyday use and functionality. This term applies not just to articles of clothing, but anything that can be worn on the body. Watches, hats, glasses, and shirts all fall into the very broad category of wearable electronics when paired with some sort of electronic technology.
“Wearable electronics” is a relatively new term which has begun to strongly catch hold within the technology community in the last decade. Due to rapid technological advances, useful wearable electronics are now much more mainstream, tapping into a large array of fields and markets which could benefit from the devices. Medical, academic, and mainstream consumer markets are all areas currently exploring both the popularity and usefulness of this technology.
Perhaps the most interesting of these products deal with everyday consumer applications. Products within this field include devices such as smart watches, fitness bands, and smart glasses. Recent commercialization has led to a production boom, though what the future holds for these products remains unanswered. As a result, this article not only explores the technology within wearable electronics, but also the potential benefits and drawbacks to implementing this technology when it comes to common wearable products.
As part of this development track we will explore some of the basic concepts around wearable electronics using the Arduino Flora.
Recommended Prior Learning
This is an advanced electronics track and we would highly recommend that you complete some of the other coding, electronics and development tracks before you consider taking up this one.
Here’s the list of hardware you’ll need to work on this development track :
About the Adafruit Flora
FLORA is Adafruit’s fully-featured wearable electronics platform. It’s a round, sewable, Arduino-compatible microcontroller designed to empower amazing wearables projects.FLORA comes with Adafruit’s support, tutorials and projects. Check out dozens of FLORA tutorials on the Adafruit Learning System, with more added all the time! The FLORA is small (1.75″ diameter, weighing 4.4 grams). The FLORA family also has the best stainless steel threads, sensors, GPS modules and chainable LED NeoPixels, perfect accessories for the FLORA main board. The FLORA has built-in USB support. Built in USB means you plug it in to program it, it just shows up – all you need is a Micro-B USB cable, no additional purchases are needed! We have a modified version of the Arduino IDE so Mac & Windows users can get started fast – or with the new 1.6.4+ Arduino IDE, it takes only a few seconds to add Flora-support. The FLORA has USB HID support, so it can act like a mouse or keyboard to attach directly to computers.