Playful Wearables – 24 Hour Inclusive Design Challenge at BIN PORTO 2015
In design terms, the area of assistive devices can be called the graveyard of aspiration and style, although this is not the intention of their creators. Function is so all-important to their effectiveness that the great technological leaps forward have taken place within an engineering rather than a mainstream design context. Where form has followed function, it has been as a poor cousin rather than an equal partner with scant attention paid to the aesthetic aspirations of the user and the resulting emotional impact on them of stigmatising design.
Poor styling too, has often obscured both the innovative potential of the devices themselves as well as the enormous creative value that the extreme scenarios of disability offer for the design of mainstream products, communication and service design. Technological advances particularly in the area of smart textiles, responsive materials and 3D printing have opened new avenues for innovation and co-design in this field. This Inclusive Design Challenge aims to explore those avenues hand in hand with the design partners who will work with the teams.