Thursday, September 9, 2010


Toronto Wearables Meetup #4

I gave a (last minute) talk at the Toronto Wearables Meetup #4, there were about 20 people in attendance, which is an awesome crowd! My talk was well received and I got some interesting questions, specifically one about the open hardware movement. Sparkfun has done so much to make the open hardware movement easier, but we're still a long way from having the kind of ecosystem that free software has. Part of it is that the very nature of hardware design makes it harder to share and collaborate - a design and layout is much more monolithic than software is generally - small changes can break the layout, and then hours of work must be put into redesigning it.

But, on the wearables front, this meetup was hugely exciting. Turns out there is a new undergrad program (a minor) opening in Toronto only a few blocks from where I live: OCAD Wearable Technology Minor. There is a lot of material at that link, which I am still absorbing, but they have at least four "pathways", sets of recommended courses from the broader list that you can take. Fascinating stuff, I plan to go get a tour and talk to the Prof's. A couple of the students in the program were at the meetup; I'm sure it'll be a regular required event for them! One of the Prof's is Kate (pictured), who helps organize the meetup.

The #5 meetup is already planned and Sean Montgomery (of Produce Consume Robot, Vital Threads) is giving the talk. I'm really looking forward to this one, Sean and I have exchanged some emails about the pulse choker project and I'm keen to see his heart shirt.

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