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Today was Fashion Hacking day with Diana Eng at NYC Resistor and I've wanted to make these keyboard pants for a long time. The basic idea was to take a flexible silicone keyboard and somehow integrate it with some pants (or shorts). I had they keyboards laying around for a while and I ran down to the Conways to get some jeans for about $8 (Yay fulton mall!)
This was inspired by a cool project I saw a long time ago on the hypernets: http://www.engadget.com/2008/04/23/keyboard-infused-pants-make-it-okay-to-grab-your-crotch/
Now, the question was how do I attach the keyboard to the pants? Well, the first step was to cut the keyboard in half. I could've tried to put it somewhere different, but I wanted it to be in a place where it was convenient to type... which is right in the middle of your thighs.
Once I had cut them in half, I inspected the circuit to see just how hard it would be to solder the traces back together. Unfortunately it was impossible to solder traces on, and it was equally hard to use conductive thread to join the traces. After a bit of fussing, I abandoned the idea of having a fully functional keyboard and just went for style points. Interestingly enough, the left side of the keyboard still works (its attached to the USB cord still)
My basic process for making these was simple:
It was a fun afternoon build process, and I really enjoyed combining hacking and clothing (and fashion?). Sewing was actually pretty fun, but so is everything else that involves dangerous objects. I also really enjoyed the physical object -> digital design -> physical object from using the scanner as the initial data input.
Oh, and even though the keyboard just barely functions, here's a video of me kicked back playing Tetris on them:
Keyboard Pants by hoeken is licensed under the GNU - GPL license.
So what's this mean?
We're sure hoeken would love to see what you've printed - take a photo and share it on Thingiverse as a Make.
To post a Make simply visit this Thing again and click I Made One to start uploading your photo. You can also download the Thingiverse Mobile app (available via Google Play and Apple App Store) to take a photo and upload your Make right from the app!