Future Probing session about (and beyond) ‘Smart Textile’

Based on a number of our recent projects related to ‘smart materials’ and ‘intelligent wearables’ and following our method of Future Probing, Summ( )n has developed the next edition of our open training/demo sessions, similar to what we were offering during our Summer School of 2016.

The new program is codenamed The Future of Fabric, Fabric of the Futures (and as the title suggests, its goes beyond the usual ‘e-textile’ or ‘smart wearables’).  We practice this broader approach in our ‘real projects’, and don’t want to loose it in more simple versions either. Summ()n is planing to conduct a few such sessions in 2017/18, some by our own team, and some others in together with our new partners in this exciting – and literally exploding – area. Read the description of the session here, and subscribe to the first (inaugural) session that will be held in Eindhoven on Dec 12.

The Epic Days in Nottingham

What an intensive session it was! Or it were, because at the end the planned strategic workshop with the team from the Nottingham Trent University transformed into two, lasting in total for 8 days!

Some of these days were full of sober analysis 

While other were filled with wild creativity:

But either way (or rather reinforcing each other) these two-wing session lead to a creation of a fantastic new creature, Epic Yarns,  a new type of movement that will be yarning the future of smart fabric. (I still have to keep it a bit secret, and wait till the official announcement by the team, and after that I would definitely plan to write more about this exercise, and its results)

NB: Even this posting should be fact doubled, because I would have to also write and the second wing of the workshop, that one that was already conducted with the guests and partners of the new non-centre.

Fabulous days, epic indeed!

Transforming the Future: An Interesting Day 2016 by the Dutch Future Society

An Interesting Day, an annual gathering of the Dutch Future Society, will be held this year in AmsterdamConnected on November 25th.  The theme of this year is “Transforming the Future” and the event is for (and by) the members of the DFS, but my previous experience says that both the theoretical presentations and practical workshops run during this day can be very valuable for broader audiences.

Summ( )n team will be presenting a demo-version of our Future Probing method during one of the parallel sessions. More information about the program and practicalities can be found here: Interesting Day 2016: Transforming the Future.

Does AI have a future? Does our future exist with AI?

One of those extremely interesting projects that we can tell very little about. We’ve been asked to prepare and run a Future Probing session for a large Dutch bank (which is very interesting itself), and also about AI (which is extremely interesting, since it’s one of the hottest technologies of today. It may have tremendous impact on many sides of our life (and yet right now is often diminished to the trivial talks about whether (or when) it will kill humanity.


We followed our proven approached and collected a wide variety of the ‘future signals’, not only from the core technological domains, but also from the ‘neighbouring’ areas, such as new media and even interactive art. We were happy to see that the client team has produced a lot of their own ‘signals’, too, and at the end we have created a truly ‘future thinking’ space, filled with information and inspirations.

But this was only a part of the process: the next stage was to convert all these ‘future glimpses’ into more articulated ‘future worlds’ and then produce a range of ‘future probes’, to test our ideas about these futures of AI.

I had to ‘pixelate’ the images from the first stage, and have to do even more hiding and diffusing with the results of the second part. The may look funny and toyish, but in reality they contain pretty serious ideas about possible development of the new services and products (as well as new partnerships to realise them.)