Wednesday, February 29, 2012

3D Body Scanning for a Good Reason

Public Service Announcement: your local mall might have a 3D body scanner that will tell you what pants and jeans will fit your shape.  A Me-Ality kiosk recently came on-line at Woodfield Mall in Schaumburg, IL, and I tried it out this week.

If you can stand still for less than 20 seconds, fully clothed with your shoes on, and you can handle low-power radio waves reflecting off your skin, you can do this.  They ask you to fill out a form with your email address, and it is worth giving a real email address, because of the information you will be getting.

After the scan, you get a bar code that refers to your measurement data now stored in their system. Mercifully, they never show or print a picture of your 3D point-cloud derriere. They do print a list of all the pants in the mall in their database that should fit you.  For me, that was 6 types of dress pants and 20 types of jeans.  (I was expecting "ERROR DATA NOT FOUND" as my only result, so this is a lot of matches.)

The service is free.  The data is good.  I found the pants that I tried on in the prescribed sizes were all the right shape, but consistently snug.  I assume I just prefer more ease in my garments than their average user.  Going one size up, I loved the fit.

The database isn't complete, but it is big enough to be useful.  I hope more stores get on board with supplying information/samples to Me-Ality so they can keep growing.  Here's why your email is important: once scanned, you can log in to the website and find out what pants and jeans will fit you from any store online, instead of limited just to the mall where you were scanned.

Imagine shopping online for pants and jeans!  (That isn't just buying more copies of something you know fit last time...)  It could only be better by also fitting shirts and dresses - probably in the works - or printing out custom sewing patterns or alteration templates. But, seriously, this is AWESOME use of 3D body scanning technology.  Kudos to Me-Ality, and I hope you all get a chance to try it out, too.


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