One of the coolest parts of Adobe’s annual Max Creativity Conference is their Sneaks presentation, where engineers can present their not-quite-ready-for-primetime designs.
This is part science fair, part popularity gauge that allows Adobe to see what audiences respond to.
One of the biggest reactions to the dozen or so presentations was for Design Engineer Christine Dierk and her project called Primrose.
Instead of showing her new tech on the stage, Dierk wore it.
Her dress design appeared at first as a normal spangled dress that could be worn to a special event, but with a push of a button, the spangles on the front of the dress changed from silver to a dark metallic.
Next, Dierk shifted the design again to a series of lines, and then checked patterns, all of which altered the look of the dress instantly.
More impressive was another option that allowed her to animate a pattern that repeated over and over.
One final innovation utilized animated changes that automatically sensed the wearer’s movements and responded (instead of the push-button changes that she had demonstrated previously).
The dress allows wearers to design their own patterns using Adobe products and upload them.
Earlier this year, BMW introduced a car that’s color can be changed on the fly.
Lumiliu also introduced a color-shifting luminescent purse.
But the tech behind Dierk’s dress is a little different as it allows for apparent color changes and animated patterns on a flexible fabric using non-emissive displays that do not emit light, but simply manipulate what the viewer sees.
It is unlikely that the dress Dierk designed will be for sale any time soon, but the underlying technology opens a lot of interesting new possibilities for designers in the years to come.