project: secret keeper

The secret keeper gloves are a simple idea that I've been developing for a little while. I'm exploring the idea of extending human behaviour and tendencies in a poetic, playful way, and integrating the controls as unobtrusively as possible. The switches in the gloves are triggered by gestures.

The secret keeper gloves are a way to fulfill the very human urge to tell a secret, without sharing the secret to others. The wearer speaks the secret into her cupped hands, and then can play it back by holding her hand to her ear.

photo: Mike Hambleton


watch on vimeo

progress: finished!

How the "gestural switches" work:

progress: embroidering the circuit

progress: hacking a readymade circuit

I was researching musical greeting cards for a friend of mine and figured this circuit would be perfect for using in this project. Hacking an existing circuit seemed much quicker and craftier than the Arduino projects I've done in the past.

I cut off the battery housing and soldered crimping beads to a few strategic points. I decided to keep the wiring, but moved it to the back of the board and moved the capacitor off the board to keep everything as flat as possible.

interaction design: gestural controls

My first idea was to make shoulder caps, so that the wearer could directly speak and listen by gesturing with the head, but once I thought of a way to use hand gestures, gloves seemed like a much more elegent solution. The wearer clasps their hands together to make the recording. Playback is triggered by holding the thumb and forefinger together.

I drew the circuits and controls straight onto my hands for easy mapping.