Google now weaves a new technology of digital experience over the things that we use every day such as coats, bags, shoes etc which gives us the power to do more and to be more.
Google’s Advanced Technology and Projects are introducing “Project Jacquard” which is weaving a collection of threads that are conductive and touch responsive in textiles such as clothing, rugs, or every fabric made product.
From various electronic hobbyist stores, conductive yarns and threads are easily available nowadays which can be used as an electronic component to include touch-sensitive areas in fabrics. The threads made of braided steel fibres are solid than the normal thread so it gives them a hardened and functional look which made them unsuitable for sewing machines. So that these fabrics are handcrafted and custom made (designed based on user’s instruction or needs) products. Mass manufacturing of these products was not an option.
Project Jacquard threads, on the other hand, are a blend of metal alloys and natural or synthetic fibres found in common threads like cotton or polyester. They are designed to have the same appearance, flexibility, feel, and colour as conventional thread, allowing them to merge into any existing fabric pattern. And, most importantly, they are compatible with sewing machines and industrial looms.
Aside from the thread itself, the project team has created a number of small, thin electrical components, as well as connections to link them to the threads. These can be used to capture and interpret touch inputs and provide the user with haptic, visual, audio, or other feedback.
Project Jacquard demonstrations at Google’s I/O conference last week demonstrated how the technology can add simple gesture sensitivity to items such as apparel or furniture. Distinctive taps or swipes might be used to make short phone calls or progress slides in a presentation with a grid of Jacquard thread woven into a patch on the sleeve of a garment, for example. Touch-sensitive fabric added to the arm of a sofa may allow users to change the station on a smart television or advance tracks in a music playlist.
“We conceive of Jacquard as a raw material that will make computing part of the language that clothes designers, textile designers, and fashionistas use,” said project head Ivan Poupyrev in a keynote address to I/O participants. “We just want to maintain the quality of yarns just like we maintain digitals, the colour used in fabrics goes with the digital tech.”
Poupyrev said that Levi’s has agreed to be the first production partner for Google-powered fabric textiles. There is no news on when the first Project Jacquard goods will be available, but both software developers and fashion designers may sign up for updates on the project’s website.