13 November 2006

Life of the Party, 2.0 (BR)
Lampshade, your head sold separately

Those of you holding your respective breath waiting for cures for cancer and AIDS may want to exhale. So long as there's money in capturing the imaginations and disposable income of stoned twentysomethings, sick people will have to wait for a more altruistic scientific environment:
Australian scientists have created a T-shirt ... [with] motion sensors built into its elbows that pick up movements and relay them wirelessly to a computer which interprets them as guitar riffs.
-- BBC News
Oh hell yeah! Imagine the practical applications: Well, actually, there aren't any. It would appear that the scientific community is now chiefly in the business of making amusing-cum-annoying novelty items. Still, we're all a-bubble about the possibilities for mischief and hijinks.
"It's an easy-to-use, virtual instrument that allows real-time music-making - even by players without significant musical or computing skills," said the research team leader, Richard Helmer.

"It allows you to jump around and the sound generated is just like an original mp3."
Who hasn't yearned to break up their regular Tuesday morning board meeting with the unmistakable opening strains of "For Those About To Rock"? At church, you could let your deacon know he's going a bit long with his sermon by busting out an "Ave Maria/Crazy Train" medley.

I'm finding myself wishing I were back in school now, now that I think of the situational uses for "Under Pressure" and "Hot For Teacher" and the gut-laughing and floor-rolling which would undoubtedly result.

But clever and referential musical cues aren't even the best part:
By customising the software, the team has also tailored the technology to make an air tambourine and a percussion instrument called an air guiro.
WE are through the looking-glass here. We are talking about a no-holds-barred honest-to-Gee AIR-INSTRUMENT T-SHIRT BAND here. Maybe even an orchestra. You and your friends could be a compact and self-contained rock n' roll apparel assault team. You could stage your own impromptu productions of West Side Story.

And if you're sick of being so damn popular, I reckon the shir-tar -- marketers please contact Whippersnapp regarding naming rights -- is the perfect way to rid yourself of sycophantic hangers-on.