Photonic textiles

InhabitatPhilips Research is currently showing off a their new Photonic Textiles at the IFA Consumer Electronics Fair in Berlin. The Photonic Fabric integrates flexible arrays of multicolored LEDs into the weave, allowing the fabric to give off light and display programmable patterns like text messages, without compromising the softness of the cloth. Philips’ Photonic Textile Prototypes include an “SMS pillow” and an “SMS Backpack” (send a text message to it and words scroll across it). Future applications for this type of LED-embedded fabric will be things like on-the-fly customizable clothing.

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Alexander Refsum Jensenius is a music researcher and research musician living in Oslo, Norway.