Jobe Bittman Interview

nym | 08:29 PM

Jobe Bittman is an igargoyle reader, and went to the MAKE faire this weekend. Correspondant Ordaos (aka my little brother), didn't get to interview him in person unfortunately, but I did get Jobe to answer some questions over email. I would very much like to profile more cyborgs, transhumanists, and gargoyles, so if you're interested, please contact us at [email protected].


How long did it take to make your wearable?

It took me several years to make my first wearable system. It consisted of a M-1 monocular display, toshiba libretto CT100 and a twiddler 1. My current system is another small laptop, a fujitsu P5120, a MicroOptical SV-3 and the Twiddler2. All my systems have been based on laptops or PDAs.

How heavy is it?

I've never weighed it. It feels about 5 pounds.

How often do you wear it?

I used to wear it everyday for a walk. Basing a wearable on a laptop is cheaper, but you can't just grab it like a cell phone and head out the door.

What did it cost?

I think the parts were around $2700.

What do you use it for?

Usually just writing email and code, some light browsing and IMing.

How would you improve it?

Well the first change would be something smaller. The UMPCs coming out this year look promising. I was going to move to an Oqo, but the one I looked at got incredible hot.

Who or what inspired you to make it?

I think it was in 1998. I saw some reference to Steve Mann on the Internet. I found the MIT wearables page and I was hooked. My interest level has been pretty cool for the last year though, but now that San Francisco is getting metro wireless, I'm excited to improve my system again. I think having instant access to the internet anywhere is going to drive the creation of many new computer-user interfaces.

Cool, thanks for the interview Jobe. We'll be posting some of his pictures from the MAKE faire this week, along with Ordaos' photo-coverage and our first podcast with MAKER Syuzi Pakhhyan. I can't wait!

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