Spyn: augmenting knitting to support storytelling and reflection

Rosner, D. K. and Ryokai, K. "Spyn: augmenting knitting to support storytelling and reflection". In Proceedings of the 10th international Conference on Ubiquitous Computing (Seoul, Korea, September 21 - 24, 2008). UbiComp '08. ACM, New York, NY, 340-349. (2008)


Ubicomp research has spurred the exploration of more "natural" or "invisible" interfaces that can be seamlessly embedded into their environment. In this paper, we discuss the role such technology can play in augmenting existing creative practice to enhance the sharing of the handcraft process. We present the design and implementation of Spyn, a system for knitters to record, playback, and share information involved in the creation of their hand-knit artifacts. Guided by a formative study of knitting practices, we designed Spyn to capture information while a person knits and allow for the subsequent retrieval of the information using the knit artifact. Spyn uses computer vision techniques in combination with patterns of infrared ink printed on yarn to correlate locations in knit fabric with messages recorded during the knitting process. Rather than seeking to improve the speed or accuracy of the knitter, we designed Spyn to enrich the knitter's craft while preserving the look and feel of the knit artifact.

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Last updated:

September 20, 2016