Two NYU students have created a "wearable sculpture" that uses a mobile app to adjust the fabric's opacity based upon how much information you share about yourself — knowingly and unknowingly — on sites such as Google and Facebook. The more transparent you are, the more "transparent" you become.
It's a project that brings new meaning to "data visualization." Pedro Oliveira and Xuedi Chen invented the "x.pose dress" as a visual commentary on the paradox that exists in our internet culture, where we are simultaneously obsessed with publicity and privacy.
As Chen notes on her website:
In the physical realm we can deliberately control which portions our bodies are exposed to the world by covering it with clothing. In the digital realm, we have much less control of what personal aspects we share with the services that connect us. In the digital realm we are naked and vulnerable.
By participating in this hyper-connected society while having little to no control of my digital data production, how much of myself do I unknowingly reveal? To what degree does the aggregated metadata collected from me paint an accurate portrait of who I am as a person? What aspects of my individuality are reflected in this portrait?
Since I have already ceded control of my data, I wanted to go a step further and broadcast it for anyone and everyone to see.
You can read more about the project and its technology at Chen's x.pose project website.