Fernando of "Fernando's Hideaway" vowed "I would rather look good than to feel good," but a new technology patented by Microsoft might permit people to both look and feel good.
A patent application Microsoft filed with the U.S. Patent and Trade Office describes a garment containing a system of soft circuit cells that can read physical indicators like temperature, heart rate, surmise the wearer's "affective state," and send feedback to the user.
An "affective state" is a condition in which someone's feelings control their thoughts, i.e. people who get embarrassed by a slight gaffe and can't stop thinking about the incident, or people who are angry because they can't stop dwelling on whatever incited the anger.
The way the shirt appears to work, based on the patent diagram, is like this: The soft circuit cells pick up a shift in physical indicators or log a series of consistent values for physical indicators like temperature or heart rate. Those indicators are associated specific affective states.
So when the shirt collects data on your physical indicators, that data is sent over a network to a computing device, and that device sends back instructions on how to address the wearer's presumed affective state. Then the shirt's embedded system can do things like play music, warm up the shirt, or vibrate it -- all physical cues designed to affect the wearer's affective state.
Assuming the tech makes it past the patent stage, we may be looking at a future in which the promise of an outfit to lift your mood isn't restricted solely to shopping sprees.