element14 Community and Adafruit name winner of the “Hats Off” competition
November 10, 2014 – Chicago – A motion detecting, multi-colored “Jaunty Fascinator” was named the winner of element14 Communityand Adafruit Industries’ “Hats Off” design challenge, in which 10 participants from around the world reimagined the traditional hat into new wearable technology solutions.
Barbara Eldredge from the U.S. took home the top prize, an Oculus Rift and complete FLORA Collection parts pack from Adafruit, for her design. Eldredge equipped a traditional English fascinator headpiece with an accelerometer to measure the wearer’s movement. Data collected by embedded sensors prompts NeoPixels within the hat to change color intensity and color temperature from blue to green, yellow, orange and red.
“Barbara’s design and those of the other participants demonstrate how wearable technology is more seamlessly balancing form with function as it moves toward the mainstream,” said Dianne Kibbey, Global Head of Community, element14. “element14 is amazed by our members who time and time again engineer innovative, forward-thinking solutions, and we congratulate Barbara and all of the Hats Off participants on their work.”
David Crittenden received an honorable mention for his “Coachman’s Navigational Top Hat,” which transformed a traditional top hat into an LED compass using an accelerometer, magnetometer and NeoPixel ring. Todd Cowley also received an honorable mention for his “Iron Man Helmet” complete with glowing blue eyes.
Competitors were judged on their creativity, quality of documentation and the execution of their project. To aid in their designs, participants received the Adafruit GEMMA, a tiny Arduino-compatible sew-able microcontroller capable of lighting up LEDs when triggered by simple sensors and actions. In addition, participants received a series of sensors, batteries, clips and switches courtesy of Newark element14.
"We'd like to thank all the competitors and participants,” said Becky Stern, Director of Wearable Electronics at Adafruit. “It was a delight to watch these amazing electronic hats come to life on the element14 wearable technology forum. I'm looking forward to see what they all build next!"
For more information on Adafruit and the Adafruit GEMMA, visit http://www.newark.com/adafruit-industries. To view content from all 10 Hats Off challengers or to learn more about the award-winning, 270,000-member element14 Community, visit element14.com.
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