Interactive Newsprint heads to Brazil

Researcher John Mills recently made a quick trip over to South America to present the research project at the 3rd annual Ubitec conference in Porto Alegre, Brazil.

Last week saw our printed electronics project Interactive Newsprint, and researcher John Mills, visit the 3rd Ubitec Conference at PUCRS university in Porto Alegre, Brazil.

John, who is based at the Media Innovation Studio and coordinated Interactive Newsprint, closed the conference with a talk on the project, and the four-years of background research that preceded it – mainly focussing on the Bespoke project.

3˚ Ubitec
credit: Eu Sou Famecos

Interactive Newsprint seeks to develop a new platform for community news utilising printed electronics and paper. During the course of the project, the research team, which spans the universities of Dundee and Surrey, along with technology firm Novalia, has connected printed material to the web, and augmented standard paper with audio and data transfer.

“I was absolutely delighted to receive the invitation from Professor Eduardo Pellanda and the team at PUCRS to speak at the Ubitec conference,” John said. “It was a real first for Newsprint as it hadn’t previously been shown in South America. It was also wonderful to receive such a warm welcome from everyone involved.”

Interactive Newsprint demonstration

“It was great to see the reactions from those who attended the conference, and from those who hung around afterwards to try our ‘Preston News’ and ‘LEP Interactive Edition’.”

3˚ Ubitec
credit: Eu Sou Famecos

The Ubitec conference examines concepts around technological ‘ubiquity’, ranging from impact on organisations and individuals, to how human cultures are adapting to ‘everywhere’ computing.

In addition to visiting the PUCRS campus, Brazilian media group Grupo RBS welcomed John to tour their digital lab, and chat through the project with the team.

“It was fascinating to hear about RBS’s work around digital media and the new approaches they’re taking to both journalism and media structures,” John added.

A final, more informal, workshop was held at PUCRS on Friday, where students and staff had the chance to quiz John on the project and get their hands on some of our early demonstrators.

Interactive Newsprint has currently completed its ‘active research’ phase, but project partners are currently examining new ways of developing the research base and technological platform forward.