The Laboratory for Artificial Intelligence in Design (AiDLab), which was established to lead the global dialogue on creative innovation, was officially launched recently as one of the multiple research centers within the InnoHK research clusters under the flagship initiative announced in the Chief Executive’s 2021 Policy Address.
The laboratory, which was founded by The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) and the Royal College of Art (RCA) in the United Kingdom, is the region’s first research platform dedicated to the integration of artificial intelligence (AI) and creative design.
AiDLab brings together top worldwide academics, designers, and engineers to do human-centered multidisciplinary research that uses AI and unique new designs to provide multi-faceted answers for contemporary global concerns. The laboratory conducts research in three primary areas to achieve its goal of making an impact by improving the design of everyday products and services through the seamless integration of AI:
Design that is both ergonomic and inclusive
This program uses artificial intelligence (AI) to provide revolutionary body measurement and posture correction solutions that boost fashion design and health and well-being wearables.
Product and Service Design Innovation
This program focuses on participatory, user-centered design research using co-design approaches to help AI creative systems evolve in a continuous and iterative manner. Machine and self-learning systems are used in the research to speed up product and service design processes.
Quality Control and Intelligent Fashion Design
This curriculum looks into the algorithmic design, which combines computer intelligence and human understanding to improve design, quality control, and manufacturing processes in the fashion and textile industries.
The laboratory is introducing a key project and a big facility as part of the launch:
(I) Interactive Design Assistant for Fashion based on Artificial Intelligence (AiDF)
AiDF is a market-first technology developed by Professor Calvin Wong and his team that allows beginners and experts to collaborate with AI to quickly generate a range of original fashion designs based on their particular creative ideas. AiDF develops unique creations based on the designer’s original inspirations and personal style, unlike current mainstreamed AI technologies on new image generation, which rely entirely on the digital input of existing real fashion photos to output new designs. The system was co-developed by AI specialists and designers for designers, and it satisfies the practitioner’s demands during the ideation and development process utilizing a specific combination of AI technologies. Designers may revise or integrate personal options in their collections with only a few simple clicks, augmenting traditional, intensive studio methods with agility, efficiency, and flexibility. Before being sent out to the industry, AiDF will undergo rigorous trial use studies with regional and worldwide fashion practitioners. The AiDF team performed a demonstration today. The AiDF-driven technology and fashion collections will be displayed at a fashion show in 2022 to share creative ideas created through the interaction of humans and AI.
(II) Wearables that incorporate AI and dynamic scanning
With the dynamic movement data gathered by its state-of-the-art facility, the “4D Body Scanning Lab,” AiDLab researchers will generate ergonomic design breakthroughs for functional garments and wearables. It’s the first of its type in Hong Kong, with a markerless scanning technology (3dMD, USA) and 30 machine vision cameras to capture a variety of stances, motions, and gestures in four dimensions. Researchers will be able to utilize the device to capture human beings in dynamic movements, according to a recent demonstration. Predicted pressure/temperature distribution of different types of human body shapes can be generated by combining scanned motion data of the human body with pressure/temperature distribution data as well as AI techniques to facilitate customized functional apparels and wearables design and product development. This facility will help AiDLab’s projects that focus on optimal fit and comfort for well-being acquire new knowledge.
In the future, AiDLab will build the Artificial Intelligence in Design Consortium (AIDC), which will bring together entrepreneurs, designers, and engineers who share a common vision of using AI and design to inject new energy into the sector.