The fashion industry is urging Washington not to hinder creativity when the government formulates policies surrounding the internet of things, as everyone from Met Gala celebrity guests to U.S soldiers slip on wired garments.
During February’s Fashion Week, designer Nayana Malhotra wrapped models in pieces that served as projector screens — linked to consumer-grade EEG devices. A nearby computer was programmed to detect certain brainwave patterns, then visualize that data with animated GIFs that expressed corresponding emotions. Depending on the model’s mood, these GIFs would change and morph as they walked down the runway.
Now, Kenya N. Wiley, founder of the D.C.-based Fashion Innovation Alliance, is asking the Commerce Department to consider the $260 billion digital economy, when crafting any new federal regulations for networked-clothing and other internet of things gear.
The alliance “values the privacy of the consumers using fashion tech products and services, and we recommend that any new policies governing IoT create an environment that supports and advances the ever-growing fashion tech industry without limiting innovation,” she said in a June 2 letter to Lawrence E. Strickling, assistant commerce secretary for communications and information.
Commerce on April 6 had requested the public weigh in on the benefits, challenges and potential roles for the government in advancing ubiquitous interconnectivity, known as the internet of things.
The alliance, whose supporters include the Brooklyn Fashion + Design Accelerator at Pratt Institute, recommended there be a research and development hub for fashion tech in the internet of things that should be patterned after the Pentagon-funded Revolutionary Fibers and Textiles Manufacturing Innovation Hub.
The hub, a…