New Nomads Book Review

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New Nomads Book
New Nomads is one, if not THE, first book ever published about Wearable Electronics. This book was launched in 2001 by Philips Design and the ideas presented where something that seemed far off into the future. It is also a eye opener, clothing is not seen as something to keep protected but also to add functionality of ‘none typical’ nature for textiles – Electronics. How revolutionary!

The author Stefano Marzano and his team in Philips Design worked out a concept of adding to an ‘everyday’ item like clothing new functionality based on the emerging miniaturization of portable electronic products like audio player, mobile phones and many more.

What makes this endeavor so outstanding is that never before has someone started to adapt a very, very personal item like our clothing to the latest digital lifestyle trends – the shrinking of electronic products.

But there are limits to miniaturization. It can help make products smaller and easier to use, but the ultimate dream is not to have easier tools: it is not to have to bother with tools at all!

The step forward then is the integration of functions into objects that we do not feel clutter us, that are part of our life. The idea of integrating technology into clothing is therefore a logical step.

I have read New Nomads at the begin of 2002. It was my first contact point to Wearable Electronics. New Nomads changed the way I see the future of clothing, the complete and full integration of ‘everyday’ functions in an ‘everyday’ object, being my clothes, bags, shoes – just in everything I will (most certainly) not leave without my house.

As I mentioned above, my first impression of the ideas in this book sounded like very ‘far off into the future’ and after six years, spending a lot of time on Wearable Electronics, I must admit that we are still quite behind the ideas and concepts Philips Design has worked out and presented in this groundbreaking book six years ago.

My verdict: a classic in the Wearable Electronic book section and a must read to get elevated and fully tuned into Wearable Electronics.