C’NECT — nano wool

Isabel Andersson

Isabel Andersson
Dec 16, 2016 · 4 min read

This project focuses on people living on the countryside in a world of urbanisation. My concept is around the persona the unknown, created in a fictive world; the last village. A girl who one day had enough and left her turbulent life in the city and moved to a village on the countryside. One important part in this project is the central role handicraft has played in our homes in the past. It has been a way of finding stillness, connecting with our hands and body and at the same time creating something useful.

The final concept is a shirt you knit by yourself. The shirt is a combination of old and new technology. The wool connects to your body; senses, hormones, electrical impulses et cetera. You can modify the shirt for your comfort at home, the personal interaction and level of interference with you in your home, and it translates gestures and physical contact to other people wearing the same system.

With the concept I would like to raise awareness and discussions about what role we want our technical devises to play in our daily lives and whether they become signs of weak trends in our society?

A friend of mine moved from a ten million city where he had lived his whole life to a small town in Sweden. He came out on the porch where I stood, he had tears in his eyes and I asked: what’s the matter? He looked at me and replied: I can hear my own heartbeat.

In the year 2036, 80% of the earth’s population lived in the city, she was one of them. It was never something she had chosen, it had just always been like that and with her qualifications there was only job for her in big cities. Every week she received new job offers, but what could they offer her more than money and even more stress?

She walked to the fridge, the display on the fridge said “out of milk”, she had to decide: to order ecological or non ecological milk? So many decisions, she felt tired. Her phone beeped — someone calling for attention, always someone calling for attention… Maybe she should watch some TV? She felt this agony again, this moaning inside of her, and she could not remember the last time she was at peace with herself.

She looked down at her hands, they were fiddling with something, they were always fiddling with something. One of the screens beeped again, another job application. She sighed, just about to turn it off — flashy photos caught her attention, some village far up in the north. They were looking for a system developer for their food supply. She looked down at her hands again, they were tearing little balls of fabric from her shirt, the shirt felt like paper. The hands stopped for a second, lay still in her lap, then one of them raised, and clicked the apply button.

Her hands packed the bag for her, their movement felt fluent and light, like they knew their way, she just had to follow along. She went down to the street, sat down in a vehicle, she could drive it all the way, it would know its way back. It was getting dark and the vehicle was warm, she felt drowsy, but also calm, like when she was little and sick, and her mum would come and pick her up and drive her home. “Maybe I’m on my way home?” she thought as she fell asleep. The first thing she felt when she stepped out of the vehicle was the fresh air, it was moist but instead of shivering she felt awake by the clear sky. The person welcoming her was a young man, energetic, sunburned. He introduced himself as “the ranger” with an ironic smile on his face. She felt a bit overwhelmed by his intense energy, normally the people she met had glazed eyes and jagged movements — his eyes were clear and green.

Apparently her house was a bit further away from the other houses in the village, she felt a relief when she saw the little cottage lying on the side of an oak hill. It was autumn, and the sun was pale but still the colours were rich and vibrant. She opened the door to the house, no light switch. She waved her arms — no light. She clapped her hands, the lights went on. Silly TV shop light switch she thought, the first thing she would replace with something better. She was grateful that the ranger had left her already outside the cottage — a busy man it seemed. Someone had already made a fire and the house was slowly warming up, she sat down on a wooden box placed by the fire. She saw the tongues of flames eating the wood. She felt a low rhythm, like a beat, she realised that it was her own heart beating.

One year later

The people here in the village believed in me and together we launched the nano wool brand I created. The business is going well and it has brought a steady economy into the village. To people here it seems a bit odd that the wool is selling so well and Hildur said the other day that she “understood the handicraft bit, but couldn’t understand the purpose of all this technology..” I guess to them I will always be a city girl, but they accept me for who I am and I can honestly say I have found my place here and it feels like home.

Future Domestic Landscape

Design Fictions from the MFA Interaction Design programme, Umeå Institute of Design, 2015–2017.

Isabel Andersson

Written by

Future Domestic Landscape

Design Fictions from the MFA Interaction Design programme, Umeå Institute of Design, 2015–2017.

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