Flexible Fabric Speakers Are Coming

A Korean research firm has announced that it has developed a technology for the mass production of sound speakers that are as flexible as fabric. "This product will cause revolutionary changes in how speakers will look in the future," said Koh Seok-geun, president of PNI. "It took four years of studies after we initially developed the technology to make it available for mass production."

The speakers are made with a kind of plastic that is studded with electrodes; PNI researchers used plasma on the electrodes to get them to stick to the plastic. Just cut out any size piece of the fabric and attach it to an amplifier with a wire - drape your new speaker over an object, hang them like curtains, or put them in a picture frame. You could even make a cheap suit coat for hawking your wares at trade shows.

This could provide the essential ingredient that is missing in talking tape. In his very cool novel Distraction, Bruce Sterling wrote about how talking tape, one of my favorite pieces of technovelgy, could help construct a building:

Oscar peeled a strip of tape from a yellow spool and wrapped the tape around a cinder block. He swept a hand-scanner over the block, activating the tape...

"I'm a cornerstone," the cinder block announced.

"Good for you," Oscar grunted.
(Read more about talking tape)

However, Pimp My Ride enthusiasts should note that this miracle fabric speaker cannot be installed on the back seat of your hoopty for awesome bass sound. The speakers can only support sounds in the upper end of the register; it cannot emit the bass sound you need.

Read more at Scientists create flat speakers; thanks to Reg for the story.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 5/1/2005)

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