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November 1, 2017 AT 12:00 am

Conductive thread stores data in clothes without built-in tech #WearableWednesday

Dims

Via Engadget:

New technology may soon enable you to get into your home or office with nothing more than your coat, wristband or tie. Scientists at the University of Washington have found a way to create smart fabric, using only conductive thread with no other added electronics.

The team manipulated the polarity of magnetized fabric in cloth patches to encode different types of data, which so far can include 2D images and strings of bits, which can store things like passwords. The data can then be read with a standard smartphone using “its inbuilt magnetometer,” wrote the researchers. They also found out that magnetized fabric won’t lose data when washed, ironed or dried. The team developed a glove made of the smart fabric that was able to perform gestures in front of a smart phone with 90 percent accuracy. The scientists said that the fabric can be used in a variety of accessories, too, like necklaces, wristbands, ties and belts that can then carry data within them.

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