Studies and research in the Media Lab are typically undertaken with a problem-based approach, organised as project work. Each year tens of projects are completed by our students and researchers, often also in collaboration with partners.

Research Projects

The Pious and the Pagans by Said, Airas, Ojala, Diaz

3D model by SysRep research group in “The Pious and The Pagans – Portrayals of Humanity” exhibition in Hämeen linna. The installation is a digital re-imagining of a medieval diorama, using three ancient statues whose original stories are unknown.

Feeler by Durall, Leinonen, Pöllönen, Frias, Aldunate, González

Feeler combines self-monitoring of electroencephalographic activity (EEG) and screen activity with a specific script that guides students’ activity during a study session. By tracking attention and relaxation, Feeler aims to create awareness about how different activities affect the ability to focus when doing academic tasks.

Social Augmented Reality Application by LeGroup

Social Augmented Reality App (SoAR) is a mobile video conversation application with the possibility to draw on the video stream. Its aim is to help problem-solving and communicating in work context, more specifically in construction and maintenance work.

Kataja – Visualising biolinguistics by Jukka Purma

Kataja is an experiment for creating digital instruments to deal with complex theoretical entities, in this case syntactic structures in biolinguistics. Kataja aims to bring model development and their visual presentation close to each other.

Edukata – Participatory Design Model for Educators, LeGroup

Edukata turns teachers into designers of their own teaching. By leveraging decades of participatory design expertise and know-how, Edukata brings proven techniques to teachers to effect school change and educational reform. Edukata bridges the gap between visionary ideas and classroom practice.
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Antikythera, Crucible

“Antikythera” is a tactile, interactive and audiovisual poetry application for iPad and other tablet devices. It is based on the Antikythera mechanism, the ancient analog computer from c. 100 BC Greece, found in the Mediterranean Sea in 1900, and explores new forms of digital poetry.
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Embodied augmentation, LeGroup

We shall present Ach so! mobile recording and annotation application that is designed primarily for construction workers. We will also frame the future application to empower the workers – “Social Augmented reality” Both apps are based on the informal learning idea that stresses shared experience.
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NeuroCine, Crucible

The multidisciplinary team NeuroCine studies embodied underpinnings of intersubjectively shared narrative experiences by combining methods of cinema, interactive media, and cognitive neurosciences.
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MA Study projects

Tämä elämä project by Antti Ikonen, Miikka Junnila and students

Study guidance gets a new tool with Tämä elämä (This Life) project. The main goal of the project is to help young people of high school age to make good choices in the transition to secondary education. The project creates a mobile game that allows young people to test the consequences of their different choices. Young people attend workshops to make the game by creating rules, characters, and music.

Interactive Drawing Table by Liam Turner and Maya Pillai

Output from the Bodily Interaction and Generative Media Coding courses; we’re developing an interactive table which allows someone to make a collage or draw with the texture of any objects around them on a large physical surface in front of them.

Soft Robotics – workshop and exhibition by Avner Peled and Kilian Kottmeier

Student initiated workshop, organised by DADA, funded by TTER. Soft Robotics is a new and rapidly growing approach to robotics that aims to harmonize with the living environment by using “soft” materials such as silicone, rubber and gelatine that actuate on air.

Hi, or not by Isaksson, Niva, Ma, Giokarini, Kumpulainen, Dammert, Kolehmainen

A social game that lets you practice every day human interactions in a safe environment. A game jam game made during the Global Game Jam 2017, was awarded the Social Edugame Award in Finnish Game Jam Awards.

Miura Torch by Kottmeier, Isasi, Jakobsson, Bastadjian, Katajisto

Miura torch installation in Finish Science Centre HEUREKA. The artwork draws inspiration from traditional origami and the applications of flat folding objects. Each piece in the artwork is a modification of the Miura origami tessellation, and hence flat foldable. Put together the whole will no longer fold flat, but only satisfies the mathematical condition of being locally flat foldable.

Mathematical Garden by Meskanen-Kundu, Isotalo, Pillai, Garcia Alcazar, Romanov

Presentation of the current work we have on display in Heureka until the middle of August 2017. Poly (methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) fluorescent acrylic. The mathematical garden plays with the relationship between the architectural patterns in nature in relation to mathematics.

VøR – Virtual Reality History Timeline by Reunanen, Eerikäinen, Laatikainen, Räisänen, Carelse

VøR is an interactive timeline of the history of Virtual Reality. The idea behind VøR is to show concurrent developments in various fields, such as computer technology, media and research – seeing them side by side provides the user a holistic view to how VR came to be as it is today.

Robot’s Rock by Timi Koponen, Milos Novak

A short animation about a small robot who encounters a stone, which stands on his way. Length 2m 30s.

Ketsu by Isaksson, Giokarini, Pitkonen-Piguet, Jukkala, Kolehmainen, Wang

Spring game project – A mobile puzzle game about symmetry and mirrored movement.

Samsara by Horton, Li, Niva, Wahlroos, Montell, Huttunen

Spring game project – A 3d local co-op adventure where together you restore harmony to the world.

Vector Synthesis by Derek Holzer

VECTOR SYNTHESIS is a media-archaeological investigation into obsolete computer visualizations, using sound synthesis and vector graphics display techniques to investigate the direct relationship between sound+image.

Sacrosance by Elias Jääskinen and Gautam Vishwanath

Sacrosance (working title) is a Virtual Reality game for the HTC Vive wherein the player assumes the role of an archaeologist seeking an ancient sacred relic from a lost civilization. The journey is full of broken expectations, uncanny adventures, and nerve wracking surprises.

The Story of Space by Asiala, Böök, Hoban, Pillai, Said, Tiainen, Vishwanath

The Story of Space explores space and its connections to science, philosophy, art and culture to create inspiration, dialogue and spontaneous learning experiences through a free, public festival. Curated through conversations and an open call, the festival will bring together researchers, artists, cultural practitioners, coders, and educators in Goa, India, Fall 2017.

Animafest Zagreb Festival, Competition Entry by Mercedes Said

A submission to Animafest Zagreb, to produce their festival visuals, teaser and trailer for 2017.

Markoviser by Jukka Eerikäinen

Markoviser is a phrasal improvisation automaton with a touch-based interface. The main focus of the project is to explore the balance between algorithmic phrase composition and human player intention.

Hytkyttää by Ville Niemi

Viiksimaisteri’s (Ville Niemi) programmed and controllable visual artwork ‘Hytkyttää’ consists of 3D modelled human forms taken into open Frameworks for manipulation and distortion. Hi-fi computer imaging meets lo-fi controllers to make the visual playable.

Broken, or not by Spigai, Närekangas, Provoost

Concept for an exhibition for the Helsinki Design Museum, giving relevance and attention to broken objects and the stories behind them. A critical perspective aiming at drawing imperfection into the museum context, encouraging at the same time participatory experiences with the audience.

Pixel Polizei by Reunanen & Heikkinen

Pixel Polizei is a tool for the retro artist. It lets you automatically check whether an image conforms to the color limits of a particular oldschool platform, such as the Commodore 64, and save the result in certain native formats.

Otaniemi Soundscape by Melike Ceylan

Introducing the new podcast series based on local sounds in Otaniemi; field recordings, sound marks, narratives, sonic impressions and reflections.

Brainwash by Elisa Spigai

Our project would change the interface of a washing machine altering its general appearance and meaning. Brainwash wants to change the behavior of people doing their laundry through the introduction of a playful element.

Bitter Lands Teaser Trailer by Linda Vuorenvirta

A “teaser trailer” for a hypothetical animated feature film with sci-fi, fantasy and action-adventure themes. Alternate universes, supernatural monsters, blades and their bearers come together in the badlands in this narrative.

FLU by Ollikainen, Juganaru, Vishwanath

Flu is a 2D platform-puzzle game for all ages. The story is about a bird ridden with flu attempting to rescue eggs from a poultry factory.

When Tiger was Smoking a Pipe by Dai, Kailu, Lee, Häusler, Juganaru, Gurgulitsova, Tisel, Vicentini, Visockis

The Graduation Exhibition consists of seven works representing different aspects of the theme ‘When Tiger Smoked A Pipe’. This Korean saying means ‘once upon a time’ and refers to the northern mystical nature present in all the works.

Move or Die by Lee, Ling, Reponen, Uusitalo, Pernilä

Move or Die is an interactive game containing research contents of species which are endangered by climate change. The game is designed to be entertaining and playful for people of different ages who are visitors of The Finnish Museum of Natural History.

When We Have Passed / fbCyborgs by Ville Niemi

“When We Have Passed / fbCyborgs” is an interactive cinema experience. Showing you a dystopian depiction of the future. A certain manufacturer has created a duplicate of yourself, who is more than eager to get to talk to you… Facebook account is required for viewing.

No Man is an Island by Zlobin, Lukka, Vapaakallio, Kuusniemi

No Man is an Island is a story-driven, surreal role-playing metaphor, and has some text snippets, so be prepared!

Digital Engagements at EMMA by van Giersbergen, Thibaudeau, Tiainen, Zhang & al

Our projects include a meme workshop, navigating the museum space by relations, a walking guide to public art, a video communication method for museum and audience to share their ideas, feelings about art expressed in colors, icon-based engagement with artifacts and a mind-mapping exercise with modern art.

Cosmicamente by Siying Huang, Shareef Askar, Eero Tiainen

Cosmicamente using EEG headgear to detect viewer’s brain wave data and generate visual footage based on the concentration level. The viewer will have a cosmic scale visual experience according to their mind state.

Conducting Senses by Andre Vicentini, Fernando Visockis

Conducting Senses is an audiovisual experience that makes possible for audiences to interact with large projection mapping in city landscapes. The premier happened in the Media Facades Helsinki Festival in August 2015.

Visible Climate by Jacome, Berg, Leino, Uzer

Climate change is no longer “near future scenario”, it is a phenomenon happening right now. We want to show the public how it is already affecting our lives. Through photography, documentary video and a participatory platform we hope to bring the issue into the public debate.

Facing Future by Laamanen, Kuvaja, Brandtberg & al

Aiming at creating new ways of teaching healthy life style and new methods of learning. During the project a game is developed based on the ideas of the participants, i.e. youth from three different cities (Athens, Helsinki and Prague).

Talk2me by Chia-Ming Chang

Talk2Me is a practice-based research project in interaction design that aims to explore a communication solution to bridge the face-to-face communication gap between deaf/hard of hearing and hearing people.

Darkroom Mansion by Vasenius, Uzer, Kuvaja & al

A mobile game for The Finnish Museum of Photography. It is probably also the first and only mobile game in the world by a photographic art institution.

sound-globe by Yakov Lurie, Kilian Kottmeier

Soundscape Map is geography for the ears. It allows you to explore environment acoustically by listening to places, not seeing them.

Spix's Macaw by Kilian Kottmeier, Soujanyaa Boruah, Sanna Suonpää

In this project, the calls of some rare species of birds have been analyzed into frequency data strings that was used to generate visual patterns to be knitted into scarves. The program was written in Processing and the scarves were fabricated in STOLL TMS 340 TC.
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brocs online by Joaquín Aldunate

A collaborative online music making sandbox that is in progress.

Padworks – doesn’t it? by Tuomas Ahva

Tuomas Ahva explores the possibilities of an iPad as a musical live instrument and builds a sonically multilayered solo performance with it.

LabOurWard by Vicentini, Rantanen, Kottmeier & al

The LabOurWard study project is part of a crossdisciplinary innovation project that seeks to rethink the delivery room in low resource settings to improve the experience of women giving birth, their babies and families, through design.

Muhanad. A story of one refugee by Dickman & Anokhina

In this interactive video you are the one who decides what happens to a young Syrian refugee Muhanad next. His future is in your hands.

The UFO Controller by Tommi Koskinen

It looks like you’re playing a weird Theremin but you can do a lot more with it. The UFO, abbreviation for Ultrasonic Frequency Oscillator, is a performance instrument designed to change your electronic music livesets for good. It allows you to control music software and synthesizers with simple waving hand gestures.

Metrobeat by Mohseninia, Pöllönen, Visockis

We hacked it – the the public transportation ticket validator machine!

No Time | Too Much Time by Juulia Juutilainen

Interactive installation about loneliness.

Video Poetry Marathon by Salgado, Kaskela, Crisólogo & al

These video poems are an outcome of collaboration between poets and enthusiastic video makers during one day event: Video Poetry Marathon. This event was organized as part of the Hack Your Heritage! in February 2015. 19 participants from different disciplines and 12 different nationalities used AV materials from Finland, but also from other international online archives that release their content with licenses that allow derivative work.

Online support services for woman that experience violence or threat of violence by Ikävalko, Lahdensuo & al

The study project explores the role of social media tools and services in increasing the effectiveness and reach of the activities and communication of third sector organizations. During the spring 2015 our partner was Naisten Linja ry (Women´s Line) a Finnish NGO that provides support and advice for women and girls who experience violence or threat of violence. Together we developed 4 concepts that help Naisten Linja in their service renewal strategy.

Astronaut Down by Uzer, Paakkanen, Morimoto & al

Astronaut Down is a short adventure game that tells the story of a solitary space worker who takes an unexpected voyage into deep space. The fusion of audio-driven puzzles, atmospheric soundtrack and pastel storytelling makes Astronaut Down a play field at the fringes of games, music and comics.

Films Make a City – Perceptions of Helsinki Depicted in Films by Diaz, Ling, Lahdensuo & al

Cities are considered to be hubs for almost everything. Our intent was to research and illustrate what makes a city; in specific, what makes the place called Helsinki. We decided to approach the issue by researching on how Helsinki is perceived in films. We wanted to find out, how a random selection of films shot in Helsinki depict the mood of the city and influence the making of it. 

Culture Cam (A visual search app for europeana) by Marttila, Laakso, Botero

Culture Cam offers designers, artists and all creative people the possibility of exploring and accessing Europeana content in a fun, playful and intuitive way by using a webcam. Take a photo of any object, texture ­– or even yourself – with your webcam and Culture Cam will provide you with a set of images that are similar in color, shape or pattern.

Sketch-a-move / Move- a- sketch : a toy with which you can design movements by Eunyoung Park

I made arts and now I'm making toys with which others can make art. The toy has been a big inspiration to art, it can go vice versa. Users can design movements easily: movements that mimic humans, animals and everyday objects, movements that can draw various geometrical shapes to make a new media art, to learn STEM subjects such as physics and mathematics, or just to have fun!

Hearts Forest – A Short Animated Film by Gabriela Juganaru

A stop motion animation which combines a whimsical aesthetic with deep personal exploration. The narrative is a literal telling of a figurative story taken from the filmmaker's past. The theme, though drawn from an individual's experience, is hopefully one which can be universally felt and appreciated.

The LED Dress by Linda Vuorenvirta

A sci-fi style dress which allows the wearer (or observer) to affect LEDs sewn into the attached gloves by pressing a sensor in the centre of the chest. From there, it's up to your imagination. Can the wearer now shoot energy bolts out of their "powered up" gauntlets? You decide!

Dynamic Visualization 2 Projects by Mäkelä, Meriläinen, Shagal & al

Four interactive visualizations from the DV2 course, including themes such as Twitter feeds, feral animals, a food game and alternative economy.

Kinemata – motion memory enhanced by Neumeier & Pejoska

Kinemata is a wearable device that captures the user’s body movements for the purpose of learning that movement. The user can feel the motion simultaneously while performing it through the auditory, visual and tactile feedback that enable an enhanced perception of the movement itself, thus raising awareness of it.

Department of Media Cryptoparty by Régis Frias & Molly Schwartz

On April 28th this year, we organised, in an experimental manner, the first Department of Media CryptoParty (a decentralised, global initiative to introduce the most basic cryptography programs and the fundamental concepts of their operation to the general public). We would like to use our experience as a starting point to discuss issues related to privacy and bring them to the agenda of our everyday lives.

The Other Side – PQ 2015 by Dowsett, Pöllönen, Erkamo & al

A group of Aalto students created a large wall (5m x 2m) made of latex they developed, with amazing stretching capabilities. Media Lab's Guy Dowsett and Niklas Pöllönen created a unique sonic experience for people interacting with the wall, and those on the other side.

Frozen Dreams by Vishwanath, Pernilä, Partikainen & al

Frozen Dreams is a physics-based first person 3d action/puzzle game. Game paints a psychedelic picture of protagonist’s subjective experience of the coma, where he struggles with demons of his earlier life. Game mechanics rely on physics engine which intends to create a unique gameplay experience.

Pelori – Digital Tool for Documentation and Collaboration by Koert Jobse & Taro Morimoto

Pelori is a digital documentation and collaboration tool for maker community.

TimeSense by Pöllönen, Inokuchi, Durall

TimeSense is a design prototype that enables people to experience time according to how they feel. The prototype visualizes brain waves electromagnetic activity dealing with attention and relaxation through a wall clock. The clock changes the speed of time according how relaxed or attentive is the person. High levels of relaxation stop the time, whereas high levels of attention make it advance faster.

Social AR – enhancing context dependent communication and informal learning by Pejoska, Purma, Bauters & al

Social AR is a mobile application that augments reality by enhancing video calls with overlaid interactive drawings, for the purpose of asking and providing guidance in context-reliant work situations.

Buzz Driver by Sanna Reponen & Leda Gurgulitsova

Buzz Driver is a haptic navigator for bikers, tourists or anyone who needs directions but wouldn't want to look at a screen all the time. Buzz Driver leads you through vibration so you could look around and enjoy the scenery.

Rush by Leda Gurgulitsova & Fernando Visockis

Rush is an interactive projection situated in one of the busiest spots of Helsinki – the core of Kamppi shopping centre. It emphasizes the whole atmosphere of the place where people pass usually in a hurry. Instead of forcing them to slow down, the work acts as a mirror of their own haste.

Inside Job presents Zero Hour by Jose Jacome & Meela Leino

"Zero Hour" will take place on Seurasaari in Helsinki, Saturday the 12th of September 2015. It combines a Zombie Run with an outdoors market, a sample of Helsinki's counter culture. It all ends with a party and live music performances. It also features a media art exhibition in between.

One day on earth by Lisha Dai

This is a short 3D animation which tell a dramatic life of an egg.

Mobile Soundwalking-sharing by Pouyan Mohseninia

A mobile soundwalk-sharing and social networking service that enables it is users to record soundwalk experiences and share them on a social networking platforms.

Ramshackle Dystonia – A Live A/V set by Fernando Visockis

Live Audiovisual set / Natural User Interface

Shadow Bug by Laamanen, Valori, Ylimäki

Never before has it been so easy to explore a vivid game world full of action and adventure. Take on the role of Shadow Bug and stop the evil factory that’s corrupting your forest home. Encounter unforgettable creatures and discover that a real adventure is possible, even on mobile!

Old Gods by Nikulin, Rodriquez, Uzer & al

Old Gods is story-driven action-adventure game set in a dark, horror inspired take on 19th century Europe. You play as Victoria Grimsworth, born with the special power to see beyond and into the world of the dead. The demo is structured as a tutorial that introduces the key mechanics of the game.
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{MUST+ACHE} by Mäkelä, Kim, Schwartz, Mohseninia & al

MUST ACHE 2014 tracked six participants’ process of growing a mustache during the month of November as part of Movember movement. The project includes a photo diary, historical insights, and participants interviews, which are also shared in social media for everyone to see.
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Tank Fortress + Paratroopers by Morimoto, Pernilä, Patrikainen, Ruonala

Massive rolling firepower and colossal engines. Tactical action game for local multiplayer.
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Sonic Drawings by Duarte & Gutieszca

Sonic Drawings is an interface which merges the traditional art of drawing with generative sonification coming from analog electronics and digital computer vision. This project has been presented as a performance in the International Conference on Live Interfaces 2014.
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