Shanel Wu working in a garden
PhD Student
ATLAS Institute

Shanel M. Wu (preferred pronoun "they/them/their") is a PhD student in the ATLAS Institute at CU Boulder researching smart textiles. After graduating from Harvey Mudd with a Bachelor of Science in physics and computers in 2016, they taught math and science, as well as freelanced as an independent fiber artist, instructor and knitwear designer. They are also a self-taught knitter, crocheter, spinner and designer of knitting patterns. Advised by Laura Devendorf, Shanel researches the intersections of cutting-edge technology and handicraft in the Unstable Design Lab. Their work seeks to foreground issues of sustainability and justice in the emergent smart textiles technological domain.


  • Shanel Wu and Laura Devendorf. 2020. Unfabricate: Designing Smart Textiles for Disassembly. In Proceedings of the 2020 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI ’20). Association for Computing Machinery, New York, NY, USA, 1–14. DOI: (Honolulu, Hawaii (virtual) – April 25-30, 2020).
  • Mikhaila FriskeShanel Wu and Laura Devendorf. 2019. AdaCAD: Crafting Software For Smart Textiles Design. In Proceedings of the 2019 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI '19). ACM, New York, NY, USA, Paper 345, 13 pages. DOI: (Glagow, UK – May 4-9, 2019) [Best Paper Honorable Mention Award]

​​Additional Publications