53 Photos - Sep 14, 2013
Video: Here's the finished coat, playing a variety of videos.
The following slides show how it was built.Video: Photo: Turned the coat inside out and removed the inner brocade lining, and added bird netting with 3/4" spacing, wrapped around and cut to fit the pattern of the original coat lining.
The original EL-Wire design is partly visible from the back of the lining (you can see it here: https://plus.google.com/photos/113044775100915882929/albums/5858087829180143409)Photo: The bird netting is looped onto the lining attachment buttons - the inner brocade lining will capture it fully, and maintain just enough tension  to keep all the strips in alignment inside the body of the coat.Photo: Cut and weave the strips through the netting, alternating every two spaces.  Eight strips is just enough to wrap all the way around the coat this way, with some extra bits left out under the arms.
16 strips would provide maximum resolution, which would be awesome, but it would be rather heavy too, and suck juice!
Also note that the strips are only laced through every two cross-threads of the mesh.  I tried lacing them on every thread, but that turns out to over-tighten the mesh, which then bunches up making it nearly impossible to lace the whole length of the strip.  When lacing only every two threads the strips slip through easily.Photo: Re-connecting the strips in a zig-zag pattern (see tutorial at https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/113044775100915882929/albums/5871017363821967249)Photo: First two strips in place - each cut into four equal segments running up and down the coat.  (Same basic pattern as the PixelPusher video wall.)
Note the aluminum wire connecting the mesh from the front to the back, attached to the buttons.Photo: Temporarily reinforcing the mesh with more wire and tape to do the first video test (figured out final reinforcement later).Photo: Hanging inside out to test the drape of the strips. Some sag is inevitable, until we get the strips in the front.
(Update: after adding all the strips, it became clear that they need more reinforcement, and need to hang from each other over the shoulders.  The bird netting is great at keeping the strips spaced properly, but turned out to not be good for carrying their weight at the same time.)Video: Turned back right-side out.  First light!
It isn't mapped yet, so the video is broken up.Photo: Added two more strips, cut to fit under the arms.  Laid out on the floor to do the first mapping test.Video: The mapping process, using Rus Maxham's PixelMapper app.Video: First mapped video playback on the floor.Video: First light with mapped video through the coat. It's pretty bright.Photo: Adding strips in front - note the stronger reinforcement in progress, wrapping tape around the wires, then the entire connection.
Note also the hot-glue squirted down into the strip sleeve both front and back, bleeding out to form a strain relief around the wires.  This keeps the wires from tearing out the solder pads on the flex-circuit, and also helps spread the weight of the strip onto the silicone sleeve.Photo: Additional layer of tape wrapped back on itself, to spread the weight of the two strips across the hot-glue strain reliefs and the sleeves.  
Note that the tape sticks well to the hot glue, but not the silicone, but completely surrounding the sleeve seems to be sufficient.  I do expect this approach to have a limited life-span, and the coat does require careful handling.  For example, it will never be on a hangar while these strips are in it, instead laying flat for storage.Photo: Sticking tape to itself around the strips and wires should carry the weight pretty well.  (The neighboring pairs of strips are connected to each other in a later step.)Photo: Now that we have the strips reinforced and matching the pattern of the coat, removing the strips to work on wire reinforcement with them laid flat.Photo: Removing strips from coat was necessary to add reinforcements across all the strips, including the shorter ones under the arms.  
Note also the compound curve across the top, necessary  to fit the drape of the coat across the shoulders and neck.Photo: Aluminum bonsai wire is strong, but nice and malleable so it will flex along with body motion while still supporting the strips.  Folded more tape over the wire onto the previous reinforcements, connecting them all together into a single band.Photo: Running the wire down to suspend the strips under the arms, then back up to the front stripsPhoto: Longer piece of tape to suspend the shortest strip under the arm.Photo: Strips placed back in the coat in order to finish the front reinforcements at the right angle, and connect them across the shoulders.Photo: Poking holes through the tape for the cross-connectors.Photo: Adding cross-connection wires to carry the weight of the strips on the shoulders.  Also note the loop connecting to the button that attaches the linings to the body of the coat.Photo: Cutting the connectors and soldering in the extension wires.  Clear packing tape holds the wire to the back of the strip up to where it starts lacing through the netting.Photo: Extension wires are laced through the netting, and pass through a hole through the inner lining at the right hip, then into the belt pack.Photo: Added a button-hole through the tape reinforcement at the neck, taking advantage of the lining attachment there to carry some of the weight of the strips.Photo: Closing up of the brocade lining, turned inside-out - note that the bird netting passes around the buttons and is captured between the inner and outer layers of lining.Photo: Here are the extensions from all 8 strips leading into the belt pack. I used some 4-conductor stranded 26ga phone wire I had from the previous EL-Wire project, and it works just fine, no noticeable voltage drop.Photo: Opening the belt packPhoto: Inside the belt pack is the PixelPusher controller, a 10,000mAh 4.8v D-Cell NiMH battery, and a TP-Link pocket router. Note also the short pigtail connector between the battery and the controller - this taps power for the router, and also contains a 30A fuse for safety.Photo: Belt Pack un-packed.Photo: Removed the completed strip lining from the coat once more, and laid it out for final pixel mapping.  Note the connectors added to the ends of the shortened strips under the arms...Photo: iPad PixelMapper app by Rus Maxham.  It doesn't yet have the ability to skip invisible pixels, so I needed to temporarily plug some external strips into the shortened strips under the arms.Photo: Counter-weighted and angled the tripod to get as straight a shot as possible.Video: Here's the pixel mapper finishing up its pass and running its test pattern.  Next, we remove the temporary external strips, and...Video: Here's the first video played through the fully mapped strips.Video: My friend Victoria wearing the coat at Luminescent Playground, before the front was finished.  I left the strips hanging loosely, so they would drape with the body of the coat.  The bird-netting keeps them in alignment without adding too much rigidity.Video: Victoria wearing the coat, playing with Owen's Kinect-driven particle system (and no, the video on the coat has nothing to do with the video on the screen...  yet.)Video: Video: Video: Video: Video: Video: Video: Video: Video: Video: Video: Video: Video: