Google’s “Project Jacquard” Creates Conductive Yarn For Industrial Weaving

google and levis

Bloomberg writes: “At last a technology company has grasped the essential difference between wearable and portable, between clothing and accessories, between artifice that seems like second nature and artifice that seems like a clunky cyborg upgrade. Surprisingly, that company is the same behemoth (though a different team) that peddled the aggressively unnatural Google Glass.

At last week’s developers’ conference, Google Inc.’s Advanced Technology and Projects group announced what it calls Project Jacquard, named for the early 19th-century looms that first used digital punchcards to program complex patterns.  The project’s central innovation is a conductive yarn tough enough for industrial weaving and mass-market apparel and upholstery production. The threads can connect to chips that react to gestures, monitor heart rate or body temperature, or do whatever else a designer might come up with. Google hasn’t talked publicly about pricing, but it’s definitely going for scale. Its first design partner is Levi Strauss & Co.”

While companies struggle to create products that embed technologies without the bulk or overly present notice of them, the partnership between Google and Levi’s seems promising.

Read the full article on Bloomberg.

Image: Project Jacquard