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MIT, mecca for geek culture, makes a fashion statement

Aminata Kane (right), an MIT Sloan School of Business student, showed some of her designs at the school’s Tang Center. (Charlie Mahoney for The Boston Globe)
Aminata Kane (right), an MIT Sloan School of Business student, showed some of her designs at the school’s Tang Center. (Charlie Mahoney for The Boston Globe)Photos by Charlie Mahoney for The Boston Globe

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The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, that mecca for geek culture, is ready to make a fashion statement.

A handful of fashion-minded MIT students are creating companies targeting niche consumer styles and voids in the retail industry. Some aren’t even using algorithms.

The businesses were showcased at a university-sponsored fashion event this week and range from more conventional ventures working with textiles to make and sell garments to companies creating tools to enhance the online shopping experience. Some aim to solve problems that have long plagued the retail industry.

This minisurge of MIT start-ups is driven by a budding category of fashion industry entrepreneurs at a school best known as a breeding ground for data-heavy, software-based technology companies.

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