MeU (pronounced mi-you) is a flexible LED matrix that is meant to be worn on the body to display information. It is a modular system of flexible 8 x 8 LED matrices controlled by a smartphone via bluetooth. It is meant to be embedded into clothing and accessories such as jackets, shirts, pants and bags. MeU is designed to be removable so the user can wash the article of clothing, charge the battery or put it in another piece of clothing.
There are many potential applications for MeU. One of the main applications is a bike safety system where the LED matrix can display turn and stop signals. The MeU is embedded in the back of a jacket so it is visible to drivers behind the cyclist. Another application is a nighttime safety system where the matrix will light up when walking alone at night or display messages for help when encountering dangerous situations. One other application could be the display of environmental data such as air quality index or an extreme weather event. The wearer could display this information for others to see much like a public warning system. More personal applications include interactive clothing where users can display personal messages, dynamic decorative patterns, or even play games with other people on their clothing. Apps can be developed to display any kind of visual information on the LED matrix.
The MeU started off as a graphic design undergraduate thesis project at OCAD University in Toronto, Ontario in August 2012 under the direction of Professor Patricio Davila. The initial idea was to find a way to share public information about the local urban environment with people who may not have immediate access to that information.