Hairwire sensor–embedded extension takes selfie by just stroking your hair

Hairwire by Katia Vega

We have seen gesture-controlled apps become a common affair for modern day smartphones. But have you ever heard of hair-controlled smartphone? If not, then be wary of a woman stroking her hair, it could be a gesture to control her smartphone to record the conversation! Straight out from a secret agent movie like gadget is the inspiration for this new wearable technology. Hairwire is developed by Katia Vega from the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janerio, Brazil and is taglined as “The conscious use of unconscious auto-contact behaviors”.

She earned herself the award for best tech demo at IUI 2015, a user interface conference in Atlanta, Georgia for this innovative creation. And if you remember Katia has been engulfed in creating unique new ways of controlling gadgets since a long time now, as was demonstrated by the wink controlled drone.

Hairwire is an artificial hair extension which is fitted with capacitive touch sensor that records the variation in the way hair is caressed to initiate the programmed action on your smartphone. To increase the electrical conductivity of the sensors, Katia draped these artificial hair in metalized compound, and to save you skin from getting damaged by this very chemical she added layers of non-conductive hair extensions too. This non-conductive layer also helped in improving the capacitor sensor value to better recognize the intended gesture.

Hairwire by Katia Vega

The sensors register the touch input to the top, middle and lower end of the chemically metalized strands and also the pressure applied. This input is calculated by the microcontroller which then initiates the wished-for action to initiate on the smartphone. For example stroking the hair could send a SOS message to the chosen mobile number or maybe, pulling the ends could start the recording app on your phone to record a conversation. The possibilities are many, it is just that how you choose to use it.

Katia envisions this prototype to make it through to the commercial market and be used as security wearable gadget for women or used by intelligence agencies to gain secretive information. The whiz lady also has plans to launch a similar wearable tech gadget for men in the form of beards. That would be an interesting application for use with your smartphones!

Via: NewScientist



Hailing from the northern region of India, Gaurav has a profound liking for everything upbeat in the cloud and vision to acquaint readers with the latest technology news. He likes to observe nature, write thought provoking quotes, travel places, drive cars and play video games when things get too boring. And his food for thought comes from ambient music scores he listens to.

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