Body Scanner May Improve Online Shopping
A new body scanning device has online retailers hopeful that this will be a profitable holiday season. Experts estimate that from 30-60% of all online apparel purchases are returned because they do not fit - and many shoppers don't even bother trying to order clothes online.
(Body Scanner builds up detailed image of body measurements)
The new scanner is being developed by the London College of Fashion, video imaging researchers at the University of Surrey and the company Bodymetrics.
The company already has in-store scanners that use the motion sensors from Microsoft's Kinect gaming device in Bloomingdale's in the US, Selfridges and New Look in Britain, and Karstadt in Germany.
Some firms, including Berlin-based Upcloud, are already offering home scanners that use a webcam, but the British developers say their system is able to measure in unprecedented detail.
With the new system, a shopper inputs his or her height as a reference and can then take a single full-length picture with a webcam or smartphone from which all their other measurements are calculated.
It uses the measurements combined with a person's overall proportions to build a 3D image.
Combining this with sizing information from retailers, the system would also overcome the problem of variable sizing, which can mean a shopper is a "medium" in one store but a "large" in another.
The technology builds on previous work by the University of Surrey that was used to create animated characters in games such as The Sims.
Science fiction authors (and tailors, I'm guessing) have been wishing for a better way to measure the human body for clothing for a long time. In his 1899 story When the Sleeper Wakes, H.G. Wells tried to imagine a solution to this problem:
...the tailor pulled out a number of slotted arms terminating in little discs, pulling them out until the discs were flat against the body of Graham, one at each shoulder blade, one at the elbows, one at the neck and so forth, so that at last there were, perhaps, two score of them upon his body and limbs...
The tailor set moving a mechanism that initiated a faint-sounding rhythmic movement of parts in the machine, and in another moment he was knocking up the levers and Graham was released.
(Read more about Wells' Automated Surface Measurement)
I was also fascinated by the reference to The Sims, a product that was at least partly inspired by the kingdom in a box from the work of sf great Stanislaw Lem.
Via Sydney Morning Herald
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 11/27/2012)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )
Related News Stories -
Textiles Self-Cleaning In Sunlight
'You could thrust your gloved hand into mud, and it would be white a few seconds later' - Neal Stephenson, 1995.
3D Modeling And Virtual Reality Tech Patents For Body Labs
'... Another small figure in a more voluminous type of robe marched on to the dial.' - HG Wells, 1899.
Smart Clothing From Finland
'A dress can change its color and texture in a few seconds...' - JG Ballard, 1970.
Microsupercapacitors Make Wearable Electronics Disappear
'He pressed the button in his sleeve communicator...' - Murray Leinster, 1945.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Otto Self-Driving Truck Kits
'Trucks gulped packages and scurried like beetles...'
Humans Help Robots Identify Recyclables
'You give it a good look... then press the right button and in she goes.'
Is This Robotic Hand As Quick As Yours?
'V-Stephen's surgeon-hand, a self-contained robot of precision quality...'
DARPA's XS-1 Spaceplane
'They were more airplane than spaceship...'
Douglas Adams Your Babel Fish Is Ready - The Pilot By Waverly
'You'll need to have this fish in your ear.'
OMG! DIY Arduino Robot Vacuum Cleaner Like Bradbury's Mice
'Out of warrens in the wall, tiny robot mice darted.'
NASA Culturing ISS Walls For Microbes
'Collect organisms and dust for study...'
Siemens 3D Printing Robot Spiders
'The eight thin metallic legs were pointed downwards, balanced delicately...'
Implants Melt In Your Brain, Not In Your Hands
Implant and forget - they melt in your brain, not in your hands.
Baby Boomers Will LOVE Autonomous Cars (Trust Me!)
'Old people began to cross the continent in their own cars....'
ESA astronaut Thomas Pesquet Tests His Suit
'The interior will be like airless and pressure-less space.'
DIY Method To Summon Tesla With Amazon Echo
'Thomas focussed the violet beam of a hand flash on a plate...'
AI Lawyer 'Ross' Gets First Job
'Why don't we just feed the bloody thing to LEX...'
MIT's Second Skin Enhances Original Skin
'I must care, or I wouldn't live in this lying skin suit...'
CommU Robot Children Scare Me
'Is David malfunctioning?'
VelociRoACH Insect Robots Cooperate
'They wheeled and turned in macabre simultaneity...'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories