An Approach of applying Motion-Sensing Technology to Design and Development Processes of Apparel Value Chains

University essay from Högskolan i Borås/Akademin för textil, teknik och ekonomi; Högskolan i Borås/Akademin för textil, teknik och ekonomi

Abstract:

The area of the research comprises the field of virtualization as specified to the field of three-dimensional user interfaces (3D UIs). It is an approach of applying the field of motion-sensing technology to potential areas of apparel value chains focusing on design. The background of this thesis is the industry’s established 3D design and development process and new digital tools that enable embodied interaction. So far companies are still working with a limited 3D design approach, which requires several non-value-adding activities, e.g. technical sketching and pattern creation, before a product can be virtually simulated and evaluated. As the current fashion industry’s human-computer interaction (HCI) applications have non-embodied interaction technologies, which deny natural hand movements, it was evaluated, if motion-sensing technology can enable the feeling of natural handcrafting. The purpose of the project was to investigate the designer’s attitude towards motion-sensing technology as a design tool and the potential of embodied HCI in design and development processes of apparel value chains. Enabling the designer the feeling of handcrafting in a 3D world opens a new area of research within the use of 3D fashion design tools. Moreover the thesis expected to prove the desire towards embodied interaction during the apparel design and development processes and the designer’s openness to try out new things. To fulfill the purpose, the motion-sensing technology tool Leap Motion was used as a practical device, which enables embodied interaction in design applications. A team of various designers was used to conduct a practical experiment, combined with interviews and observations. The experiment has been analysed on the designer’s attitude towards the use of a motion-sensing technology tool within the design field and possible implications on the design and development phases of apparel value chains. The results show, that the designers supported embodied interaction and experienced the use of motion-sensing technology as an enhancing and powerful tool. However, it has become clear that the designers experienced the usage of free-handed motion-sensing technology as not natural or intuitive and rather prefer tangible tools. Presupposing a crucial improvement of the technology, different ways of substituting current design activities like enabling the draping process on a virtual basis could enhance the value chain regarding speed, flexibility and waste. This would enable earlier entry into the evaluation stage of virtual simulated prototypes while directly starting the design and development process in 3D and reducing several iterations of non-value adding activities.

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