News & Events Archive

Most Recent News & Upcoming Events

The most recent news and upcoming events can be found in the News section on our home page.


  • Our TOCHI journal paper on Anisma, a shape memory alloy prototyping toolkit developed in collaboration with the University of Auckland, is presented live at ACM UIST '22. (Oct 31, 2022)
  • This October, we had 3 children from the Helene-Wener Haus visiting our lab. After a tour, they created simple moving robots similar to this year's "Helle Köpfe" (Oct 11, 2022)
  • Prof. Borchers moderates the university's event celebrating 50 years of Computer Science at RWTH (Sep 9, 2022) — Photos
  • In our Multimodal Media Madness (M3) practical lab, our undergrads just wrapped up their 3-month PyBadge retro game programming projects. In particular, the featured project "Endless Nightmare" is pretty amazing. Check out their video trailer. The PyBadge is an embedded DIY retro gaming console from Adafruit. For performance, everything's coded in Arduino (C++) with Adafruit's Arcada library. Some installation instructions are in German, but Google Translate should do the trick. (Jul 11, 2022)
  • For this year's "Helle Köpfe", 15 children from the region visited our lab and built simple robots using vibration motors and paper cups. (May 30, 2022)
  • At CHI 2022, we are presenting our full paper "Shaping Textile Sliders: An Evaluation of Form Factors and Tick Marks for Textile Sliders", two Late-Breaking Works about soft robotics and smell interactions, and a soft robotics workshop. (Apr 28, 2022)
  • A journal paper on Flowboard, our flow-based-programming tool to learn embedded coding, was just accepted for publication in ACM TOCHI. (Apr 20, 2022)
  • At this month's Aachen Maker Meetup, we are celebrating the 40th birthday of the Sinclair ZX Spectrum, the world's most successful home computer of the 80s after the C64 (Apr 20, 2022).


  • Our new learning cards (in German) that introduce 3D printing to makers are now available at your favorite bookseller — or as PDF for free. (Dec 1, 2021)
  • Our Centre Guide app for iOS and Android, the official exhibition guide for the Centre Charlemagne, now also covers their temporary exhbition celebrating 150 years of RWTH Aachen University, which opened today. (Oct 29, 2021).
  • For this year's Girls' and Boys' Day, we offered an online course about programming the wildly successsful Arduino microcontroller board. We were happy that we could provide a hardware programming experience to our highly motivated participants even though the event was online. (Apr 22, 2021)
  • We supported the city library in Eschweiler during the 'Night of open libraries' by offering a CAD design course for beginners. (Mar 19, 2021)
  • Our CHI'21 paper "From Detectables to Inspectables: Understanding Qualitative Analysis of Audiovisual Data" received an Honorable Mention Award, a distinction aimed at the top 5% of submissions to CHI, the premier international conference on Human–Computer Interaction. Congratulations Krishna and Johannes! (Mar 15, 2021)


  • We supported ROCK YOUR LIFE! Aachen e.V. with their preparations for their digital winter festival by lasercutting sets of tangram games in our Fab Lab. (Dec 18, 2020)
    rock your life aachen green
  • Our ARPen is the Day 1 surprise in the AR/VR in Education advent calendar. :) (Dec 1, 2020)
  • Prof. Borchers will be on a research sabbatical during the upcoming summer semester, from Apr 1 until Sep 30, 2021. We still offer most of our courses nevertheless.
  • Our Centre Guide, the mobile audio guide for Aachen's Centre Charlemagne museum, is now in the iOS App Store and the Google Play Store, in time for the new exhibition on Charles V who was coronated exactly 500 years ago on Oct 23, 1520. (Oct 8, 2020)
  • Prof. Borchers holds a series of usability workshops for RWTH Aachen University's SAP development team. This is part of our initiative to improve the usability of RWTH's software systems. (Sep 23, 2020).
  • RWTH is Germany's #1 in Computer Science Research. (Aug 26, 2020)
  • In our practical lab, Multimodal Media Madness, our Bachelor students have developed impressive extensions for Ultimaker's open-source 3D printing software Cura, simplifying everyday tasks and enabling new ways to use your 3D printer. All plugins are available to download, complete with short product videos, user guides, source code, and full documentation. (Jul 16, 2020)
  • We are coorganizing a workshop on Otherware, a term we are introducing to describe the new class of AI-infused interactive systems that require a rethinking of the interaction with them, beyond naïve anthropomorhism. (Jun 3, 2020)
  • The City of Aachen was kind enough to feature us in their excellent thank-you video in times of Corona, for our initiative. (Apr 27, 2020)
  • We coordinate efforts at RWTH and in the region to fight Corona through rapid 3D design  and 3D printing of required parts and equipment — see (Mar 30, 2020) 
  • Our Fab Lab Aachen joins the fight against the Corona virus by offering 3D printing and design capacities. (Mar 20, 2020).
  • PhD student Christian Corsten did a great job defending his thesis Use the Force: How Force Touch Improves Input on Handheld Touchscreens today. An excellent introduction to the area, based on several CHI papers and other publications. Congratulations! (Mar 10, 2020)
  • We are proud to have been selected to develop the mobile guide app for the exhibition celebrating 150 years of RWTH Aachen University. (Mar 9, 2020)
  • We will present four archival papers at ACM CHI 2020, the world's premier HCI conference this year. Congratulations Simon, Phil, and Krishna! (Jan 13, 2020)
  • Our Fab Lab Aachen expands thanks to taking on a key role in the upcoming Excellence Startup Center NRW at RWTH Aachen University. This multi-year project brings exciting new 3D printers, a UV print-on-everything plotter, and even an industrial robot to our Fab Lab — and funding for the staff necessary to continue and expand our service to startups and the local community. (Jan 13, 2020)


  • Fab Lab Aachen turns 10! On Wednesday, December 18, we celebrate the 10th anniversary of Germany's first Fab Lab, an open workshop at our chair to discover Personal Digital Fabrication. To the event. (Dec 18, 2019)
  • We host our third exclusive Digital Fabrication Workshop for the 2020 ac2 startup competitors. (Dec 2, 2019)
  • This September, we are hosting the 'Dankeschöntag' with which the Protestant church of Aachen thanks its volunteers for their help throughout the year. Here a report of the day. (Aug 07, 2019)
  • Prof. Jan Borchers gives a keynote on Interacting with Artificial Intelligence at IEEE ProComm 2019 (Jul 25, 2019).
  • For the press conference to announce the upcoming 150th anniversary of RWTH Aachen University, we created a 3D printed triangle based on a design by the RWTH Press and Communications Team that was revealed at the event. The object took about 26 hours to print, finishing live during the press conference. (Jul 15, 2019)
    jubiprogramm1  jubiprogramm2
    Left photo (from left to right): Senate Chair Professor Stefan Kowalewski, Rector Professor Ulrich Rüdiger, Chancellor Manfred Nettekoven, and Aachen City Mayor Marcel Philipp. Photos by Andreas Schmitter/RWTH Aachen University.
  • Three of our students Leon Wittwer, Rene Niewianda, and Christian Schmidt successfully graduated from Fab Academy. Congratulations! (Jul 15, 2019)
  • Flowboard, our learning platform for embedded programming, gets an article on the Arduino blog. (Jun 10, 2019)
  • We host an exclusive Digital Fabrication Workshop for the 2019 ac2 startup mentors. (May 14, 2019)
  • Honorable Mention Award for our paper on Springlets at CHI 2019! This award goes to the top 5% of all submissions to CHI, and CHI is the top conference in our field. (Mar 15, 2019)
  • We're presenting three full papers, two late-breaking works, and two demos at ACM CHI, the top international research conference on Human-Computer Interaction this year. (Feb 22, 2019)
  • Our PhD student Christian Cherek will join Apple's development headquarters in Cupertino for a four-month internship this summer. He’ll be working on core parts of macOS and its SDKs that he can’t share too much about. Apparently, we have been able to bypass the heap of normal internship applications Apple gets because our past interns (like our former PhD students Eric Lee and Moritz Wittenhagen, and several of our MSc students) have impressed Apple’s engineers so much with their skills. Congratulations Christian! (Feb 6, 2019)
  • We host an exclusive Digital Fabrication Workshop for the 2019 ac2 startup competitors on Apr 2. (Feb 5, 2019)
  • We start Fab Academy 2019 today, teaching 3D printing and Personal Digital Fabrication again in a collaboration with the M.I.T. (Jan 16, 2019)


  • In 2018, our lab turned 15, and its founder Prof. Jan Borchers turned 50, all of which we celebrated on Fri, Nov 9, 2018 with a fast-paced, entertaining afternoon of talks and demos. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. required. (Nov 9, 2018)
  • Our TABULA research project has been selected as one of four flagship projects in the Tangible Learning Initiative of the German Ministry of Science and Education (BMBF). TABULA uses an original invention of our chair — graspable, physical "tangibles" that are tracked by a large, modern capacitive touch table display — to help student teams learn fundamental computer science concepts more easily together. The BMBF has organized a roadshow that travels to Munich, Bremen, Leipzig, and Aachen, with TABULA and three other core research demonstrators, plus many more exhibits and talks. The Aachen event will be held on Nov 19, 2018. The events are free, but registration is required. More photos. (Oct 23, 2018)

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TABULA with its development team, and one of the panel discussions, at the first stop in Munich (Image credits: Jörg Koch)

Left: Riding champion Laura Klaphake with our 3D-printed logo. Center: Prof. Borchers with CHIO mascot Karli. Right: (from right to left): Carl Meulenbergh, CHIO mascot Karli, Marcel Philipp, Laura Klaphake, Sönke Rothenberger, Frank Kemperman and Prof. Dr. Jan Borchers.
(Image credits: RWTH Lehrstuhl Medieninformatik/Jan Borchers (left,middle), CHIO Aachen/Holger Schupp (right))
  • Our Virtual Conductor / Personal Orchestra is featured in EuroWings inflight magazine No. 44 (March & April 2018), pp. 20–21. (Local cached copy.) (Mar 26, 2018)
  • The 2nd Aachen Maker Meetup is taking place on Wedneday, March 21. This month's topic is tools. More details and signup on the Meetup page.
  • 1st Aachen Maker Meetup: We hosted the first Aachen Maker Meetup at our lab today, with invited guests and around 50 participants networking and bringing their projects to share and discuss. Today's focus was on the past, present and future of learning electronics and other Maker skills. Detailed report online. (Feb 21, 2018).
  • Best Paper Honorable Mention at CHI: Our paper Use the Force Picker, Luke: Space-Efficient Value Input on Force-Sensitive Mobile Touchscreens received a Best Paper Honorable Mention Award at ACM CHI, the world's premiere conference on Human-Computer Interaction. These awards go to the top 5% of submissions. Congratulations to Christian, Simon and Andreas! (Feb 9, 2018)
  • Guest Lecture at Fab Academy: Prof. Borchers is giving a guest lecture ("recitation") How to Make Almost Anything Usable on usability guidelines for makers, within the worldwide Fab Academy curriculum organized by MIT professor Neil Gershenfeld on Monday, February 5, 2018.
  • 3rd Aachen Usability Meetup: Today, we hosted the third meetup in this series. This time the topic was how to explain the value of user experience (UX) work to non-UX people. Prof. Borchers gave a 20min keynote, followed by three other short talks from UX professionals (Jan 25, 2018).
  • Fab Academy starts: Today, Fab Academy 2018 starts! Our lab is offering this class in collaboration with MIT's Prof. Neil Gershenfeld. It's a hands-on class teaching 3D printing and other digital fabrication skills to "make almost anything" in our Fab Lab, with Fab Labs from all around the world participating. Three of our students receive scholarships through the 3DCC 3D Competence Center research project. We're Germany's first university offering the Fab Academy, together with our partners at two Universities of Applied Sciences, Hochschule Ruhr West and Hochschule Rhein-Waal who coordinate the 3DCC project. (Jan 17, 2018)
  • 3 Papers at CHI: Three of our submissions for full papers, the most important category, have been conditionally accepted at ACM CHI, the world's premier research conference on human-computer interaction. As every year, CHI only accepted around 25% of all submissions. Our papers report our latest results in Tangibles on Multitouch Tabletops, Force Input on Smartphones, and Interactive Embroidery. (Jan 10, 2018)


  • Collaborative Robot Race at AC2: We designed the Entrepreneur Parcours, an interactive exhibit that lets two users drive a robot ball through a maze together. It's featured at all four kickoff events of the AC2 startup competition this week and next week. (Nov 4, 2017)
(Image credit: RWTH Lehrstuhl Medieninformatik/Jan Borchers)
  • Telepresence Workshop: Prof. Borchers ran a workshop on technologies and trends in Telepresence, videoconferencing, and remote collaboration at the Aachen Chamber of Industry and Commerce. (Oct 16, 2017)
  • Haptic Vest at BMBF: We demonstrated our Haptic Vest 2.0 at the Open House Event of the Ministry of Education and Science (BMBF) as one of four examples of the new high-tech strategy of the federal government this weekend. Jan Thar and Sophy Stönner from our lab demonstrated their latest prototypes of the vest to research minister Prof. Wanka (left photo) and numerous other guests. Details in the event reports on the BMBF homepage and on the pages of the Photonics Research Initiative Germany. (Aug 27, 2017)
(Image credits: BMBF/Hans-Joachim Rickel (left), RWTH Lehrstuhl Medieninformatik/Jan Thar (right))
  • Our Haptic Vest 2.0, a wearable vest that renders depth images from a front-facing camera onto the wearer's torso using an array of vibration motors, enabling people with vision impairments to avoid obstacles while walking, was featured in a dedicated TV report in WDR Lokalzeit Aachen today. The report (in German) starts at 14'50" into the program (local cached copy). (Jun 13, 2017)
  • FLApp, our mobile augmented reality city tour about Aachen's innovations and discoveries in science and engineering for the City of Aachen, launches for iOS and Android (May 9, 2017).


  • Prof. Borchers is on research sabbatical at UCSD in the U.S. for the winter semester from Oct 2016 until March 2017.
  • Prof. Borchers speaks as an invited speaker at RWTH's annual teaching summit ("Talk Lehre") about teaching as motivation, after receiving the computer science teacher of the year award by RWTH's CS department in December. (Jun 29, 2016)
  • Last night, in a packed coronation hall at Aachen City Hall, Sophy and her brother Henric Stönner's startup Laserkatze was elected one of the three recipients of the prestigious AC² Startup Award! From among 170 contestants overall, they placed third in the startup category. Founded just recently, Laserkatze offers custom laser cutting and engraving, from design to manufacture, to businesses and consumers, from their cute store in Aachen's hip Frankenberger Viertel. Check it out if you are in the area. Since Sophy got hooked on lasercutting in our fab lab, you could consider this our first award-winning spinoff! (Jun 3, 2016)
  • Today, our lab starts work on the Personal Photonics project, a new three-year research project that aims to create new interaction techniques and user interfaces for photonics components, systems, and tools, to make them easier to use for makers, designers, artists, and other non-engineers, putting the photonics industry on center stage of the Open Innovation movement. This project is funded by the German Ministry of Science and Education (BMBF) through its Open Photonics Initiative. (June 1, 2016)
  • Join us at our next boardgame night - it takes place each 2nd and 4th Monday of the month (May 23, 2016)
  • As part of RWTH Aachen University's HCI Center, our lab heads the new three-year TABULA research project exploring the use of interactive tangible objects on multitouch surfaces in education. This project is funded by the German Ministry of Science and Education (BMBF) through its Tangible Learning Initiative, starting today. (May 1, 2016)
  • Podcast "Maker - digitale Schöpfer demokratisieren die Produktion" (eco Verband der Internetwirtschaft e.V.): (Feb 25, 2016)


  • Prof. Borchers presents the future of 3D printing, personal fabrication, and personal design at the Aachen 2025 work group. (Dec 8, 2015)
  • Prof. Borchers receives the Teacher of the Year Award ("Lehrpreis") by RWTH Aachen University's Computer Science Department. In particular, the laudatio honored "his captivating lecture Designing Interactive Systems I, and the high-quality video recordings of all his classes". (Dec 4, 2015)
  • Today the German Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) opened the Light Cares exhibition in its new Berlin offices, showcasing Maker solutions using photonic tools and technologies to help people with disabilities. Prof. Borchers guided minister Johanna Wanka through the exhibition. Prof. Wanka took over an hour out of her busy schedule for the tour, engaging with many of the makers discussing their projects. Our haptic vest OpenVNAVI for blind users that uses a depth camera and a matrix of 128 vibration motors to render the space in front of the user onto their chest was one of the exhibits. Open Innovation and Maker Culture are thus becoming increasingly hot topics at BMBF, even beyond their highly innovative photonics research department. The exhibition shares the BMBF foyer with our permanent interactive installation ROBOLED there, a steampunk robotic arm driving an OLED wall display. (Oct 12, 2015)
  • Our Fab Lab Aachen will receive 1M€ of funding from the EU and the state of NRW through their Regio.NRW initiative, for research into future user interfaces for personal design and personal fabrication. The work is part of a collaboration headed by the University of Applied Sciences Rhein-Waal, and with the University of Applied Sciences Ruhr-West, to form a digital fabrication competence center over the next three years. The partners will also collaborate with the MIT to offer the FabAcademy curriculum at each of their three locations. Government press release (Sep 9, 2015)
  • Prof. Jan Borchers' free book Arduino in a Nutshell has been downloaded over 80,000 times. (Jul 28, 2015)



  • The iWall, a 1920x10 pixel large scale (60m) media facade and public display is operational in time for this year's Computer Science Day which we organized (Dec 6, 2013).
  • Prof. Jan Borchers speaks on 3D printing at the RWTH Science Night on Nov 8, 2013 (in German).
  • Prof. Jan Borchers speaks about 3D Printing, Personal Fabrication and Personal Design at the BMBF Future Congress on Technology for Life in Berlin on Oct 22, 2013.
  • WaterPong wins the ACM UIST 2013 Student Innovation Contest People's Award! With over 240 conference attendees participating in the voting, Water Pong received the First Prize from 26 competing entries at tonight's demo exhibition during the ACM UIST 2013 Conference in St. Andrews. Congratulations to our students Hesham Omran, Nacho Avellino and Jan Zimmermann, who each received a Surface RT tablet from sponsor Microsoft! ACM UIST is the top international conference for research in user interface software and technologies. (Oct 10, 2013)
  • Our BendDesk video has been watched 1 million times. (Sep 17, 2013)
  • iEat Mobile, our iPhone App for the RWTH Mensa menu, has been downloaded over 7,000 times! (Sep 10, 2013)
  • Friedrich Wilhelm Award for Christian Corsten: The Friedrich Wilhelm Foundation selected Christian Corsten (now our PhD student) to be one of the recipients of their Friedrich Wilhelm Award for his Master's Thesis "Co-Optjects: Instant User Interfaces through Everyday Objects". The thesis explores how everyday objects can be "abused" to control devices and technical systems - a pen becomes a clicker for your PowerPoint presentation, the glass on your sofa table a volume knob for your TV. His related paper was just accepted for presentation at the Interactive Tabletops and Surfaces (ITS 2013) conference. Each year, the foundation selects from RWTH's top MSc, PhD and habilitation theses for this award. It comes with a 500€ prize; the ceremony will be on Nov 29 at 5pm in the Aula 1 in the main RWTH building. (Jul 31, 2013)
  • Prof. Jan Borchers' free book Arduino in a Nutshell has been downloaded over 25,000 times. (Jul 31, 2013)
  • We are hosting FabLabCon 2013, the First Fab Lab Conference Europe, on Sep 9, 2013.
  • Dorkbot Aachen turns 4: Join us for celebrating four years of strange projects with electronics, interaction, design and art (July 17, 2013)
  • We hosted the PhotonikCamp II: Road To Makerfaire on June 15, 2013.
  • Thorsten Karrer defends his PhD thesis on semantic navigation in digital media with distinction - congratulations! (May 24, 2013).
  • Jan-Peter Krämer, Thorsten Karrer, Joachim Kurz, Moritz Wittenhagen, and Prof. Jan Borchers receive an Honorable Mention for their CHI 2013 paper How Tools in IDEs Shape Developers’ Navigation Behavior. (May 2, 2013)


  • Thorsten Karrer's DisplayMenu becomes the #1 free app on the German Mac App Store (Nov 15, 2012)
  • The new UIST Conference App for iOS, by our own Jonathan Diehl, made it to the App Store just in time for this year's UIST conference. Browse, search, take notes, and tweet with this great tool for conference attendees! (Oct 8, 2012)
  • We hosted the Idea Recognition Night: 3D-Printing (Oct 2, 2012)
  • We hosted the PhotonikCamp (Sep 14+15, 2012)
  • Prof. Jan Borchers has published a free booklet, Arduino in a Nutshell, introducing the latest version of this microcontroller board popular with designers and makers. (Aug 15, 2012)
  • RWTH Aachen University was confirmed as one of Germany's 11 Excellence Universities today. These are the nation's top research universities selected and funded through the Excellence Initiative, Germany's largest government research funding initiative in history. Selection and funding is coordinated by the DFG, Germany's National Science Foundation. RWTH Aachen University was one of the Excellence Universities selected in the first 5-year Excellence Initiative in 2006, and again today for another 5 years. (Jun 15, 2012)
  • We successfully launched the Humberg Guide, an iPod-based mobile guide for museum visitors in the Humberg House in Dingden. (Jun 8, 2012)
  • From Apr 1 to Sep 30, Prof. Borchers was on a research sabbatical in the U.S. Designing Interactive Systems II, the M4 Multimodal Media Madness undergraduate lab and the Media Computing Project graduate lab took place with some minor limitations.
  • Our project AURA: Ad-Hoc Interaction with Non-Planar Objects received a 300k€ research grant from DFG, the German National Science Foundation. Max Möllers and Christian Corsten will be exploring this exciting new topic in HCI. (May 16, 2012)
  • Nur Al-Huda Hamdan received a Google Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship. The 7,000€ scholarship includes a networking retreat at Google Zurich in June. (Apr 24, 2012)
  • We offer an Interactive Fashion Workshop in our Fab Lab during this year's Girls' Day event on April 26. Contact René for details. (Feb 12, 2012)
  • National Science TV magazine Galileo on the PRO7 channel reports on our experiments in printing food in 3D (Feb 9, 2012).
  • Prof. Borchers speaks on Personal Fabrication and Personal Design at the 18. Handelsblatt-Tagung, Munich (Jan 25, 2012).


  • Project MACS acquires 180,000 € of research funding to create the control bridge of the future for large maritime vessels (Dec 12, 2011)
  • First iOS/Cocoa Coding Night at our Chair (Dec 1, 2011)
  • 2,500 downloads of iEat Mobile, our free Mensa menu app for the iPhone and Mac (Nov 30, 2011)
  • Simon Voelker, Malte Weiss, Chat Wacharamanotham and Prof. Jan Borchers receive best note award at ITS 2011 for Dynamic Portals (Nov 16, 2011)
  • Prof. Borchers speaks on "Making Things Usable" at the TEDx Conference in Belgium (Nov 7, 2011).
  • REXplorer, our 2007 locative city game for Regensburg, was placed into the Computer Game Museum Berlin (Nov 2, 2011).
  • Malte Weiss, Chat Wacharamanotham, Simon Voelker and Prof. Jan Borchers receive award at ACM UIST 2011 for FingerFlux (Oct 18, 2011)
  • Jonathan Diehl develops the official UIST 2011 app (Oct 17, 2011).
  • Our Java and iPhone classes become the Top 2 Downloads on iTunes U in Germany (Oct 11, 2011)
  • Programming Your Clothes: Florian Heller and René Bohne ran a successful Arduino workshop at the ANTalive info event for 22 high school students. Download our workshop slides (in German). (July 20, 2011)
  • We hosted the 1st RWTH Computer Science Starcraft II Cup on July 9th. 29 participants from 7 different CS chairs and the student association (Fachschaft) competed with live commentary. The audience room was packed, the casters provided great live commentary, and Christian Samsel from i4 took home the first prize, followed by our very own Patrick Zimmer from i10 and Bernd Schamberg from i1 - see games and results roster. Thanks to Patrick and the other organizers!
  • Check out our Fab Lab hands-on demo booth at the ErstInfoTag, the university's orientation day for high school students (Abiturienten). (July 2, 2011)
  • dorkbot Aachen turns 2! This monthly meeting of artists, designers, and geeks "doing strange things with electricity" was initiated by our chair with the help of many volunteers in 2009. Thanks everybody, and check out the video!
  • The first German 3D Printer Master Class took place on Feb 18-20, 2011 at our Fab Lab Aachen. 10 selected participants got a chance to build their own 3D printer.
  • We are co-hosting the two-day workshop Werkzeug - Denkzeug on transmedia processes in creative design thinking with Prof. Thomas Schmitz from the architecture department (Feb 11-12, 2011)


  • The iPhone Idea Generation Event will take place on Tuesday, December 14th at 7pm in the Super C. During this event we will bring our students from the iPhone Lab together with innovators from the industry to brainstorm ideas for their final projects.
  • Prof. Jan Borchers was nominated CS Teacher Of The Year as one of four nominees selected among all faculty in the CS department, based on student nominations. Thanks for your support! (Dec 3, 2010)
  • Our BendDesk multi-surface workstation is featured in Handelsblatt Online and receives over 200,000 hits on YouTube. (Dec 1, 2010)
  • Yvonne Jansen and Thorsten Karrer win Best Note and Best Demo awards for their haptic multitouch feedback system MudPad at ITS 2010. (Nov 10, 2010)
  • We've collected some helpful information for students and RWTH institutes to get started as iPhone developers. (Aug 6, 2010)
  • Madgets, our actuated widgets for interactive tabletops, were accepted as full paper at UIST 2010, and have been featured on Engadget, Gizmodo and elsewhere. (Aug 2, 2010)
  • Our Silhouettes interactive experience at the World EXPO Shanghai 2010 was extended until EXPO closes at the end of October, thanks to its great success. (July 1, 2010)
  • Our ThoMoNetworking cocoa framework for quick and simple communication on your local network is now available for all iPhone OS devices. (May 26, 2010).
  • Germany's Federal President Horst Köhler visited the Silhouettes interactive experience at EXPO today. Over 60,000 people have enjoyed the exhibit to this day. Spiegel Online and other press outlets report (May 19, 2010).
  • Today the Media Computing Group and the Chair for Computer-Aided Architectural Design launched the Silhouettes Interactive City Game at the World EXPO 2010 in Shanghai (May 1, 2010).
  • Make your own light-up clothing: At this year's Girls' Day on April 22, we offered a very successful workshop to make your own T-shirt embroidered with interactive light-up effects. Read more (Apr 22, 2010).
  • Yvonne Jansen receives CHI 2010 Student Research Competition Award: Yvonne Jansen, Diploma student at Prof. Jan Borchers' Media Computing Group, a B-IT endowed Chair at RWTH Aachen University, won the 2nd place in the Undergraduate Student Research Competition at ACM CHI 2010 today. Three undergraduate and three graduate (PhD) students received awards after a three-phase selection process from a total of 56 submissions. As a result, Yvonne received a medal and a monetary prize from ACM. Yvonne received the award for her work on Mudpad, a new technique to bring localized, active haptic feedback to multitouch tables and similar surfaces using magnetorheological fluid. Just for the competition, Yvonne created a small "travel" version of her table-size system, using the prototyping facilities at the group's Fab Lab. After Gero Herkenrath in 2008 and Marcus Reul in 2009, this is the third year in series for the Media Computing Group to bring home an award in this competition. CHI is the premier international conference in Human-Computer Interaction, organized by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), with a below-25% acceptance rate. The Media Computing Group conducts research in Human-Computer Interaction, and continues to be Germany's most successful research group in terms of archival publications at CHI (Apr 15, 2010).
  • 3 Day Startup: start your own technology business over 3 days! We support creative new ideas and passionate students. First session will be at the beginning of June.
  • Tom Igoe, Associate Professor from the renowned Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) at NYU, author of Physical Computing and Making Things Talk, and one of the co-founders of the Arduino project, will visit the Media Computing Group to teach a B-IT Research School Seminar in the second or third week of June, 2010. Topics will revolve around Physical Computing and Sustainable Technology.
  • iPhone Application Programming lecture enters the Top 5 on iTunes U. (Feb 4, 2010). Screenshot


  • iPhone Application Programming lecture enters the Top 100 on iTunes U. (Dec 21, 2009). Screenshot
  • In collaboration with the CAAD group, we are developing an interactive collaborative gesture-based experience for the World Expo 2010 in Shanghai.
  • On Dec 7, the Media Computing Group opened Germany's first Fab Lab. These labs let anybody get from an idea for a new device to a prototype quickly, offering a glimpse of the future of personal fabrication in which 3d printers at home let you print out your personal cell phone cover in plastic. Fab Labs started at the MIT Media Lab and exist in many countries already - thanks to RWTH there is now also a Fab Lab in Germany. From soldering stations and Arduino microcontroller boards, to a PCB mill, 3D printer and laser cutter the Media Computing Group's Fab Lab offers a set of tools to turn ideas into prototypes in unprecedented ways. See the Fab Lab page for details on the opening and lab.
  • Today, the House Of Music Vienna launched our redesigned Personal Orchestra exhibit. Using an infrared baton, visitors can conduct the Vienna Philharmonic by controlling speed, volume, and the emphasis of different instrument sections. The new system now features our PhaVoRIT continuous real-time high-quality audio stretching, six new recordings of the orchestra in full HD video, an electronic music stand displaying the score, and helpful hints by maestro Zubin Mehta. Our original exhibit was installed in 2000, and has been used by 1.5 million visitors since, making it the most successful station in the house, and a top tourist attraction. (Nov 27, 2009)
  • Prof. Patrick Baudisch from the Hasso Plattner Institute Potsdam visited the Media Computing Group for a two-day compact seminar on Human-Computer Interaction. (Nov 3, 2009)
  • Our assembler support becomes part of the official Arduino IDE for physical computing.
  • BallMeR won the 2nd place in the UIST 2009 Student Innovation Contest in the category "Best Implementation".
  • CocoaHeads meeting for all people interested in programming on Mac OS X and iPhone, on the last Thursday of each month.
  • Dorkbot Aachen launched: Dorkbot is an international network of people doing interactive art and electronic hacks. Next meeting: Third Wednesday of each month.
  • Benutzerfreundliche Technik: a talk by Jan Borchers about usability for everybody, as part of the Uni im Rathaus series, on Jun 25, 2009.
  • Springorum Medal for Media Computing Group student: Christian Mattar, who did his final thesis at our chair, received the Springorum medal for graduating with distinction from RWTH Aachen University, at a ProRWTH event in the Audimax on June 19, 2009. In his thesis, Christian developed "Table Lemmings", a tabletop game that explores casual collaboration on multitouch table surfaces and became a successful exhibit for the Dutch Industrion museum. (May 27, 2009)
  • Media Computing Group student Marcus Reul wins 3rd place in undergrad Student Research Competition at CHI 2009. 3 undergrad and 3 grad students were selected from a total of 93 submissions (see press).
  • In the press: Die Tastatur denkt mit. Presentation of four projects at CHI 2009. (Mar 31, 2009).
  • We are looking for student assistants to work as Infotrainer in the Route Charlemagne exhibition in the Aachen City Hall. (Mar 30, 2009).
  • Professor Jim Hollan from USCD will be a visiting faculty at our group this summer (Mar 13, 2009).
  • We are developing a series of interactive exhibits for the Route Charlemagne that rethinks the tourist experience in Aachen (Mar 13,2009).
  • Anna Ostberg (UCSD) and David Haslem (Georgia Tech) will join our group as visiting students in the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) this summer (Mar 13, 2009).
  • Tips for students taking oral exams at our chair (Mar 13, 2009).
  • At CHI 2009, we presented 4 Full Papers and Notes, 2 also as Interactivity exhibits, and 6 additional submissions:
    • Fly, a concept-map based tool for presentations (Full Paper),
    • SLAP, rear-projected input devices from silicone and acrylic for multitouch tables (Full Paper and Interactivity),
    • Tactile Motion Instructions, using haptic feedback to correct posture errors (Full Paper),
    • TypeRight, a keyboard that makes keys harder to press when they would lead to a typo (Note and Interactivity),
    • Associative Personal Information Management (Doctoral Consortium),
    • CORONA, a virtual audio reality for the coronation hall in the Aachen city hall (Work in Progress),
    • Saltate!, a sensor-based system to support dance beginners (Work in Progress),
    • Systematic Usability Verification (Work in Progress),
    • Usability in Industrial Test Systems (Student Research Competition), and
    • Semantic Time in Interaction Design (Workshop Contribution).
  • See TWEND and DRAGON in action at the inauguration ceremony of the new UMIC building for the Mobile Computing Excellence Cluster at RWTH Aachen University on Mar 18, 2009.
  • Next NSCoder Night is on March 12, 2009
  • The AATCe (Apple Authorized Training Center Education) at our chair is offering two courses, Mac OS X Support Essentials and Mac OS X Server Essentials, between March 2 and 12. (Feb 5, 2009).
  • Media Computing Group extends its publication lead among German HCI research groups (Feb 2, 2009)




  • The Bauhaus Europe project has been stopped. We leave our materials online for archival purposes (Bauhaus Europe Pages) (Dec 11, 2006).
  • Coverage of Personal Orchestra 1 in Vienna City Guides after 6 years
  • Nov 14, 2006: Aachen local event for the World Usability Day
  • Nov 1, 2006: Our chair is a member of the new UMIC Research Cluster on Ultra-highspeed Mobile Information and Communication, established as part of the German government's Excellence Initiative. UMIC is funding Thorsten Karrer's PhD work on Organic and Adaptive User Interfaces.
  • Oct 01, 2006: In WS06/07, the DIS I lecture was moved to Tuesdays from 2-5pm to join Bonn and Aachen classes via video.
  • Jul 10, 2006: Check out the DIS2 Project Competion Video and the DIS2 Project Websites.
  • Jun 22, 2006: Our "Helle Köpfe" workshop for school kids took place this Thursday (22-06-2006). We demonstrated how to build your own music instrument with a computer.
  • Apr 27, 2006: Poultry.Internet was a big hit at CHI 2006 Interactivity:
  • Apr 22, 2006: Check out the CHI 2006 Interactivity sneak peek (med. res, high res), produced by the Media Computing Group.
  • Feb 01, 2006: DIS student projects - Designing an Interactive Large Public Display Application


  • Dec 2, 2005: We organized the annual Tag der Informatik this year. We also showed several of our research projects, and the DIS 2 student projects there.
  • Oct 27, 2005: Top Talent Quality Seal 2005 for coJIVE, our interactive jazz improvisation system, as one of the top 42 out of 411 submissions.
  • Oct 15, 2005: * Video podcasts of our lectures are now available, beginning with DIS 1.
  • Oct 01, 2005: Important change in teaching schedule: Starting WS05/06, we offer DIS1, Patterns, the seminar and the "Softwarepraktikum" in Winter, and DIS2, Current Topics, the "Praktikum" and the "Proseminar" in Summer, in order to better suit our students' needs. See CAMPUS for details.
  • Sep 26-27, 2005: We show various interactive demos at the
  • Sep 26, 2005: Details on the Sun-Softwarepreis 2005 are available now
  • Jun 8, 2005:
  • Apr 28, 2005:
  • We were the only German research group with a full paper at CHI 2005, the world's premier conference on Human-Computer Interaction. 2004 only had U Magdeburg, 2003 we were again the only ones (then still at Stanford), 2002 had no German full papers. (CHI acceptance rates)
  • Apr 05, 2005: Check out the CHI 2005 Interactivity Venue sneak peek (med. res, high res), produced by the Media Computing Group.
  • Mar 07, 2005: Schüler-Informationstag
  • Register for our seminar (11-21.01.2005) or for our proseminar (12-20.01.2005) during the next summer term.
  • Jan 27, 2005: Prof. Bernt Schiele from the Lehrstuhl Multimodale Interaktive Systeme, TU Darmstadt will be giving a talk on "Multi-Sensor Context Awareness for Ubiquitous and Wearable Computing". See the streaming video of the talk and the presentation slides.
  • Jan 19, 2005: Personal Orchestra presentation at the User Centered Computing in NRW Event, NRW House, European Union, Brussels. (View the Flyer)
  • Jan 13, 2005: CrossY talk by Georg Apitz in room 2212 at 13:00 hours today.


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