E-textile prototypes previously were used as design prompts in early workshop sessions to increase familiarity with combining physical and digital materials and demonstrate their temporal, sonic capabilities. The activity provided group participants with an immediate sense of e-textile possibilities through a direct hands-on experience. Simonsen & Robertson observe that, “people who are not professional technology designers may not be able to define what they want from a design process, without knowing what is possible” (Simonsen & Robertson, 2013, pp.2, 36). As workshop participants explored the surfaces and discovered stories & aural histories they were more able to perceive the alignment between touch, sound and textiles.
The three-dimensional form of the surfaces have been used in research work as prompts for opening up an imaginative space for people and stimulating memories. The direct experience of handling physical forms and directly engaging with a tangible product results in new and novel encounters with technological objects.