A new platform for wearable electronics, known as the FLORA, was announced by its creators Adafruit Industries on Friday. Essentially a small, round, fabric-friendly circuit board that looks a little like a flower, the FLORA will, when ready, be launched with a variety of accessories and software. These will include, we gather, controllers for iPhone, iPad and Android hardware. The FLORA is ripe for wearable DIY electronics projects: announced modules include Bluetooth, GPS, 3-axis accelerometer, compass, and, intriguingly, OLED.
The FLORA is a 1.75-inch (44.5 mm) diameter Arduino-compatible circuit board designed from the outset to be both user and fabric-friendly, as well as safe for beginners. As such, there are no thread-catching sticky-outy things like FTDI headers, plus it includes polarized connectors, protection diodes and an onboard regulator to avoid battery mishap, and it's compatible with an array of battery technologies.
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The FLORA was designed by electrical engineer Limor Fried (a.k.a. Ladyada) to drive "a large quantity" of RGB LED pixels such as the forthcoming FLORA pixel range of accessories - see the video below for an example. Considering the variety of input modules planned, a number of oddball applications spring immediately to mind, including jackets that change color depending on the weather, illuminated "don't talk to me" indicators when the wearer is on a call (automated anti-sociability, anyone?), or a shirt that tweets on your behalf if you fall down a well. Hopefully the testers will come up with rather more practical ideas.
The FLORA is entering a period of testing and may undergo significant changes prior to launch. To keep abreast of its progress, and for a full idea of the specs, have a peak at the official FLORA announcement.
Source: Boing Boing