Firstly, Happy New Year and best wishes for an amazing 2016! I’ve had a super-busy couple of months since my last post in September about my exciting trip to exhibit my ThinkerBelle EEG Amplifying Dress in Japan. I’ve moved house, which has flung me over the opposite side of London, which is going to require tons of work to create a comfy home and nice studio to work in. I have been plotting new emotive wearables pieces, plus investigating how I can develop this work and how it might evolve in the future wearables arena as a business. I’ve also given a couple of talks on my emotive wearable work at dorkbot London and the BBC, which was fun.
A fab experience for me was to get through the initial stages and to be selected as a finalist for the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council’s (EPSRC) UK ICT Pioneers Competition final. As the EPSRC describes it, “UK ICT Pioneers is a unique partnership between EPSRC and key stakeholders, which recognises the most exceptional UK doctoral students in ICT-related topics, who can demonstrate the commercial potential and impact of their research to business”. The competition included judges from EPSRC, Dstl, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Facebook, BCS (The Chartered Institute for IT), Samsung and BT. At the finals held at the QEII Centre in Westminster, London, I was really excited to take examples of my doctoral practice and present my PhD research to four sets of judges at the final, plus invited academics and industry representatives. Although I didn’t win (the competition was exceptionally tough!), I had a great day meeting judges and hanging out with the other fabulous finalists who I’d already met many of at the media training day in October at EPSRC’s HQ in Swindon. During the finals, I was bowled over to hear more details about their amazing their research projects, which I’m sure I’ll hear more about in the future as they evolve and grow.