VSMM 2017 being organized by Smartlab and run in UCD Dublin and UU Belfast, provides an ideal opportunity for both UCD Smartlabs and Mechanical  & Materials Engineering together with the School of Art University of Ulster in Belfast to collaborate with international partners and showcase current research through workshops, demonstrations and exhibitions at both Campuses. The workshop fee includes lunch and refreshments.

Please note it is only possible to attend a maximum of one workshop per session i.e. one in the morning and one in the afternoon.

31/10/2017 Morning

1. 3D Content Development and AR/VR Authoring
2.  CANCELED Digital 3D objects in Art and Humanities: challenges of creation, interoperability and preservation
3. Augmented Reality for Enhanced Tourism

31/10/2017 Afternoon 

4. WEAR: Wearable technologists Engage with Artists for Responsible innovation – changing industry from the inside –
5. Oblique Strategies for Mixed Reality Art
6. Designing Windows Mixed Reality Experiences with HoloLens



1. 3D Content Development and AR/VR Authoring
Lead instructors – Human Esmaeili and Zi Siang See

Brief Workshop Abstract

Augmented/Virtual Reality (AR/VR) tools are widely available to the developers and content designer. However, these tools require the creative process to work with usable content, such as video, image and 3D models. This workshop provides an overview of working with 3D content for AR/VR applications as well as authoring tools. The workshop takes three hours and is suitable for participants who are new to AR, VR, photogrammetry or 3D capture. In this session, participants could experience and learn how to combine all these basic authoring processes for developing a usable AR/VR outcome.

Part 1 (the first hour) primarily focuses on developing 3D content for AR/VR mainly through photogrammetry, which nowadays has become highly feasible and widely available for basic users. In the area of 3D capturing, photogrammetry is the process of combining multiple photographs to generate 3D models.

In part 2 (second and third hour), the attendees will explore AR/VR development and fundamental theories. Recent developments have been meant that AR/VR technology is more widely available than ever before, and there is a wide range of tools that can be used to create AR/VR applications. During this section, examples will be drawn from leading companies, academic laboratories. This part of the workshop will provide a hands-on experience for developing mobile AR content. All participants will work with a portal-based editing workflow and produce a simple mobile AR prototype within an hour. An overview will be provided for AR/VR authoring and user experience development.

This workshop has a goal to provide adequate information in which enables the attendees to distinguish their ideal approach in developing their own AR/VR content and potential application. Some of the previous projects will be demonstrated, and participants could gain an insight on those development processes. Research directions will also be discussed for future study and collaboration.


3. Augmented Reality for Enhanced Tourism

Lead instructors – Marc Spraragen, Jacki Morie and Pauline Felder

Brief Workshop Abstract

Augmented Reality is poised to provide a huge advantage for travellers and tourists, but it faces many challenges as AR technology and design techniques mature. This workshop will teach and demonstrate three aspects of opportunity and challenge for developers and content creators:

  • AR tourism experience contents
  • Human / cultural factors and ramifications
  • Technical development


Though tourism is a strong and growing market, tourist sites may offer limited experiences for a number of reasons. Sites may be isolated or otherwise lack informative context or content. Other sites may be rich with content, but underfunded, understaffed, out of the way, or even unknown, leading to low attendance rates. In particular, family tourism, accounting for at least 30% of all tourism, presents a huge opportunity for AR development, as parents are forever searching for ways to get their children engaged with their environment while on a tour. By incorporating interactive technology and activities into content development, the tourism experience can be greatly enhanced for both visitors and venues alike.

To engage visitors with culturally significant locations, care must be taken to include information about the place that not only tells the cultural narrative but speaks to many types of visitors, who may be there for a variety of reasons. Working with local experts is one way to ensure this. In addition, coming up with creative and innovative approaches can ensure the experience is a satisfying and educational one. Such considerations will allow AR solutions to bring significant meaning to the tourists who will visit these locations.

Technical challenges include a major tradeoff: cost efficiency of the development pipeline vs. the resources required for a successful and enjoyable AR experience. The pipeline for quality AR app development can be time-consuming and complex, especially when showy graphic-intensive assets and intricate animations are required. Additionally, new functions and novel experiences are always in demand, such as mixed visual/conversational animated interfaces, AI-assisted navigation, self-customizing AI-based characters, interactive maps, and engaging gameplay. Any quality AR experience also requires the highest possible reliability and precision of camera tracking and image registration, which can also burden development efficiency. Specific challenges in this area include: outdoor marker recognition–especially in weather and changing conditions, matching assets to variable lighting, highly accurate geolocation, accounting for the wide variety and quality of smart devices in use, and rapid advances in the end-user technology like embedding depth-sensing cameras. The workshop will close with an idea session with all participants to share future concepts for AR tourism that have been inspired by the workshop.


4. WEAR: Wearable technologists Engage with Artists for Responsible innovation – changing industry from the inside – Presentation and Workshop
Lead instructor – Camille Baker

Brief Workshop Abstract

WEAR Sustain is part of the Horizon 2020 research and innovation initiative that seeks to engage art, design and creative industries to work more closely with technology and engineering industries, to shift the design and development of the wearables and e-textiles towards more sustainable and ethical approaches and solutions.


The project initiator, Camille Baker, will briefly present the project aims and objectives and the progress of recently selected project teams in their development of their ethical and sustainable projects/products based on the WEAR Call Themes. These themes include: environment, use and reuse vs. waste and planned obsolesce, energy and batteries, body/ physiology/somatics, emotional and mental health, social/ cultural/ economic (addressing data collection, surveillance, privacy, algorithmic focussed marketing, human rights and labour practices. Baker will also go over the Call 2 information for the next round of funding and outline the

Sustainability Toolkit research that started in July 2017.

The workshop will take the bulk of the time and will involve breaking participants up into thematic groups, each focussing on one of our open call themes, spending time brainstorming the problems and solutions to these issues. Open call themes can be found here:

The smaller groups will debrief with a larger group into a discussion, where everyone will come to together to share their group summary of solutions. The workshop outcomes and discussion will be recorded to feed into our Sustainability Toolkit. The goal of this workshop is not only to spread the word on the project but also to garner valuable insights into the direction that experts, stakeholders, conference participants, etc. think the project should be going in for the duration of it and after the end of the project.


5. Oblique Strategies for Mixed Reality Art
Lead instructor – Julian Stadon and Alan Hook

Brief Workshop Abstract

The future of technology and therefore design is unpredictable and designers must develop flexible methodologies to successfully negotiate emergent systems and trends, along with fundamental understandings of what impact such developments can and will have on society its cultural institutions. This session will provide participants with inspirations from augmented reality, game design and other innovative media practices. Through an overview of current techno-social trends, next generation interfaces and project examples, this session will help students to imagine possible future scenarios for museums, drawing upon a series of examples from contemporary art, exhibition design, curatorial practice and other fields. By examining cultural production through the lenses of excess and value, this talk will reconfigure participants understandings of interfaces, interaction and how we can use these to better maintain and present cultural heritage and edutainment for future generations.

Following a brief overview of contemporary design processes, the Random Cards/Oblique Strategies method (Stadon & Meschtscherjakov, 2015) will be used to develop a practical framework for using The SPROUT Method to seamlessly integrate new technologies, innovative media formats, content delivery methods and audience interactions, to produce rigorously developed ideas and concepts, that are sophisticated in their understanding of user groups, interface strategies, emerging trends in museology, content strategy and cultural impact/value creation. Following this, groups will be guided in imagining a product-service-system, created in the intersection between the virtual world and a specific physical space: the cable car station at the top of the mountain, conceived as a potential exhibition space.


6. Designing Windows Mixed Reality Experiences with HoloLens
Lead instructor – Stephen Howell

Brief Workshop Abstract

Mixed Reality offers new ways for researchers and developers to design immersive, interactive, and compelling experiences. With Windows Mixed Reality (HoloLens and immersive headsets), developing inclusive MR, AR and VR experiences has never been more accessible.

This workshop presents HoloLens and how to develop with the Windows Mixed Reality platform.

The workshop will cover:

  1. Introduction to HoloLens and demos
  2. Developing Windows Mixed Reality apps for HoloLens using Unity
  3. Designing Inclusive Mixed Reality Controls systems such as Gaze, Gestures and Voice
  4. Designing Holographic environments with Spatial sound and Spatial mapping
  5. Sharing Holograms and Mixed Reality

This workshop is presented by the HoloLens Team from Microsoft Ireland who can cover design, research, and development topics. The focus of the workshop (design, research or development) will be determined by the attending audience.

7. IST-Africa and mHealth4Afrika
This participatory workshop session will share insights into the
objectives of IST-Africa and opportunities to collaborate in research
and implementation projects in Africa. It will showcase the co-design
process that informs mHealth4Afrika, an European Commission supported
research project investigating the impact of the introduction of
electronic health records and medical sensors on primary healthcare
delivery in rural and deep rural clinics. This session will include a
demonstration of the current iteration of the mHealth4Afrika platform.
8. IEEE Social Implications of Technology – Showcasing IEEE SSIT IST-Africa SIGHT
This session will present opportunities to contribute to the work of
the IEEE Society on Social Implications of Technology (SSIT). It will
showcase the community engagement approach adopted by the IEEE SSIT
IST-Africa SIGHT and current activities in supporting digital
infrastructure and digital literacy in rural and deep rural health
clinics in Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi and South Africa.
This participatory session will also share insight into the IEEE
Humanitarian Activities Committee, as well as issues to be considered
when establishing an IEEE SIGHT (Special Interest Group on
Humanitarian Technology) and provide a forum to brainstorm ideas.”