TEI 2020 Studio: Creative coding and interaction design for media multiplicities: challenges, paradigms and frameworks

Registration for this event is through the TEI 2020 website.

Media multiplicities are media artworks that employ multiple networked digital devices to create holistic aesthetic effects. Examples include the networked light artworks of Squidsoup, the Spaxels drone-mounted light performances, DrawBots, Siftables and many others. In multiplicitous media artworks, each individual device is a programmable node connected to other nodes via a network connection, and may combine any number of sensors and actuators. A number of development technologies support artists and designers to configure and create media multiplicities, but this domain offers new challenges for creative practitioners. This studio session aims to bring together experts in creative coding and interaction design to discuss and conceptualise frameworks for the practice of media multiplicities. Open challenges include: speed of setup; ease of hardware configuration; speed of code deployment; ability to model and simulate works in VR; network connectivity and stability; and understanding network, computation and power constraints.


  • 09-11: Creative hactivity introducing HappyBrackets development framework.
    • 09.00: welcome and introductions
    • 09.30: introduction to HappyBrackets
    • 10.00: collaborative creative task
  • 11-13: Extended abstract presentations: 10 x 10 minute papers.
  • 13-14: Lunch.
  • 14-17: Collaborative development activity.
    • 14.00: formation of groups and allocation of tasks
    • 14.30: group discussion and development
    • 15.30: group presentations
    • 16.00: large group discussion
    • 16.30: conclusions and future planning


This 1-day TEI studio will include a collaborative creative hack session introducing the HappyBrackets development framework (created with participation from three Sydney-based universities: UNSW, UTS and The University of Sydney), extended abstract presentations and a collaborative development activity.

This is not a traditional academic workshop (series of paper presentations) and more of a collaborative ideation and participatory design session. Nevertheless, interested participants are invited to (but not required to) submit extended abstracts of 500-2000 words on relevant topics including but not limited to:

  • What programming languages, tools and design patterns support creative multiplicitous media?
  • What creative paradigms, workflows and ecosystems of practitioners best support creative
  • multiplicitous media?
  • Examples of multiplicitous media systems that are adaptive to site specific contexts or different
  • applications?
  • What are the pain points in creative multiplicitous media and how can they be mitigated or
  • removed?
  • What is the ‘winning paradigm’ for flexible and reusable hardware configuration that makes it
  • easy for beginners to get started and for professionals to easily hack and reconfigure systems
  • for their needs?
  • How can simulation tools support the creation of multiplicitous media artworks?
  • What are the emerging application areas of multiplicitous media artworks?
  • How can multiplicitous media work minimise environmental impact?

Abstracts will be single-blind peer reviewed by the studio committee. Successful abstracts will be published freely online on the studio website (collated in a simple text file or PDF, no publisher or scholarly indexing, not a countable research output). Presenters will give short 10-minute talks. There may be the possibility based on these submissions to consider collaboration towards a journal special issue or book publication.

If you want to submit an abstract, please simply email it to Oliver Bown (details below) by December 31st 2019, subject line: TEI Studio Abstract

Non-presenting participants are also very welcome to attend to engage in the creative hack session and workshopping session. You must register through the TEI2020 website to attend this studio. Places limited.


Chair: Oliver Bown (UNSW). Email for correspondence: o.bown@unsw.edu.au.

Committee: Angelo Fraietta (UNSW), Sam Ferguson (UTS), Lian Loke (University of Sydney), Linda Candy (ArtworksrActive), Liam Bray (University of Sydney), Frederic Robinson (UNSW), Alex Davies (UNSW), Mari Velonaki (UNSW), Deb Turnbull-Tillman (UNSW), Wade Marynowski (UTS), Jon Drummond (University of Newcastle), Garth Paine (Arizona State University).