Episode 16 – Dr. Lucy Dunne

Dr. Lucy Dunne is the founder and co-director of University of Minnesota’s Wearable Technology Lab. Her research and work is the intersection of apparel and science. She has a PhD in Computer Science and a BS and MA in apparel design. She co-authored “Functional Apparel Design: From Sportswear to Space Suits”, has published numerous articles, and received the National Science Foundation’s CAREER award and the NASA Silver Achievement Medal for her work with functional clothing and wearable technology.

Episode Notes

Music used in the podcast: Higher Up, Silverman Sound Studio

Acronyms, Definitions, and Fact Check

Functional Clothing Design – user-requirement specific and designed or engineered to meet the performance requirements of the user under extreme conditions. (http://nopr.niscair.res.in/handle/123456789/13225)

Wearable Technology Lab UMN – an interdisciplinary research laboratory directed by Dr. Lucy Dunne and Dr. Brad Holschuh. Founded in 2009, WTL research focuses on the intersection between apparel and new technology: for instance, in expanding garment functionality through dynamic geometry and new sensing functions; in improving the way we use, manage, and consume clothing; and in streamlining the design and manufacturing processes of smart clothing and e-textile products. New technology opens new frontiers in understanding the human body, mind, and capability through pervasive sensing, actuation, and interaction. Many projects deal with translating technological potential into the real, everyday world: understanding human physical and emotional comfort and balancing these variables with tradeoffs of performance variables in a smart system design. Housed in the University of Minnesota’s College of Design, WTL students hail from backgrounds in everything from aerospace engineering to fashion design, and are immersed in an integrated, multi- and inter-disciplinary research program. (https://wtl.design.umn.edu)

Media Lab Europe – created in July 2000 and was initiated by the Irish Taoiseach Bertie Ahern. The lab received start-up funding of 35 million Euro from Irish Government, as well as sponsorship from industrial research partners. The lab focused on innovation in digital technology and human-machine interaction. MLE was quite successful and managed to recreate the creative play research atmosphere of the MIT Media Lab. By 2004 MLE was in full swing, and in the lab’s short lifespan the researchers produced 21 refereed journal articles, 59 refereed full papers for conferences, and 62 refereed shorter papers for conferences, for a total of 142 refereed works. The Lab achieved international recognition for a range of its work including EEG based mind-computer interfaces; the BumpList and Iso-phone. The lab was unfortunate to have been founded just as the internet bubble collapsed and with it the corporate ability to invest in projects of this sort. Compounding difficulties, some members of the Irish university sector expressed concerns about the government money invested in the Lab. (wikipedia)

UCD (University College Dublin) – a research university in Dublin, Ireland, and a member institution of the National University of Ireland. It has over 1,482 academic staff and 32,000 students, and it is Ireland’s largest university. (wikipedia)

Smart Clothing – Clothing that monitors the wearer’s physical condition. Smart shirts and body suits provide biometric data, such as pulse rate, temperature, muscle stretch, heart rhythm and physical movement. (https://www.pcmag.com/encyclopedia/term/smart-clothes)

What year did Marty McFly and Doc Brown visit in the future in Back to the Future Part II? – October 21, 2015.

Fitzgerald Theater – the oldest active theatre in Saint PaulMinnesota. (wikipedia)

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