Event Name: 8th International Conference on Advances in Computer Entertainment Technology - ACE 2011

Date: 8-11 November, 2011

Place: Reitoria da Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Lisbon, Portugal



Interactive entertainment is one of the most vibrant areas of interest in modern society and is amongst the fastest growing industries in the world. ACE is a scientific forum for dissemination of cutting-edge research results in the area of entertainment computing. The main goal of ACE is to stimulate discussion in the development of new and compelling entertainment computing and interactive art concepts and applications. At the conference, many interesting works were presented, including a wide spectrum of interests and disciplines like computer science, design, arts, sociology, anthropology, psychology, and marketing.

This conference included 3 keynotes, 15 paper sessions, poster session, interactive demo and also game competition.

After the opening, the first session was the keynote from Prof Hiroshi Ishii, who is a Jerome B. Wiesner Professor of Media Arts and Sciences at the MIT Media Lab. Hiroshi Ishii's research focuses upon the design of seamless interfaces between humans, digital information, and the physical environment. In his talk, he introduced the wide range of research work they carried out these years, from GUI to TUI, and gave a deep analysis into the research on tangible interface, and why it is important,from ecology, science, technology, to the design experience and also art perspectives, very inspiring. Their work can be found at




In the 15 paper sessions, a lot of interesting works were presented, from affective computing, intelligent games, tangible interfaces, to serious games, user experience, and also collaboratie entertainment. I only list some of them here.

Rope Revolution: Tangbile and gestural rope interface for collaborative play

This paper describe a rope-based gaming system for collaborative play, including a compact motion-sensing and force-feedback module that can be used for a variety of rope-based games. They used the rope as an interative tool for interesting collaborative tasks. Resutls from this study suggest that a tangible user interface with rich metaphors and physical feedback help enhance the gaming experience in addition to helping remote palyers feel connected across distance.


Children as teachers - A tangible approach

This paper describes an interactive tool that enables children to build their own educational games, based on physical objects with which they usually interact. The game authoring tool allows chidlren to use tangible objects for input when creating their own quiz-type games.

Pingpong++: Community customization in games and entertainment

This paper introduces an augmented ping pong table that applies Do-It-Yourself and community contribution princiles to the world of physical sports and play. The system includes an API for creating new visualizations, easily recreateable hardware, an end-user interface for those without programming experience, and a crowd data API for replaying and remixing past games.

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I presented the Food Media paper in the session "Collaborative Entertainment". "Food Media" is an exploration of appropriating food and food activities as a medium for family communications and entertainment, across generations and over a distance. Many people agreed with the novelty to use food for communication and entertainement, and they suggested the food printing can be expanded to other food materials to enrich the experience.

Sound-power visualization system for real-world interaction based on ultrasonic power transmission:

This system uses ultrasonic power transmission to assist in the direct physical interaction between users and a sound. They developed a novel receiving unit that extracts electrical power from the ultrasonic sound propagated through the air using the piezoelectric effect. The extracted electrical power is used to drive various devices and actuators such as LEDs, motors, and loudspeakers. The students even showed us the actual system during the presentation.


Paint Color Control system with infrared photothermal conversition:

They described a novel image display technology to control the paint color of everyday physical objects. It proposed to use the CMYK color mode and digitally controls images by a chromogenic method of thermochromic inks. They also use infrared LED to control the inks with photothermal conversion, to achieve the high resolusion and low-power color control system.

During the lunch and tea break, there were many posters and interactive demos also.

A wearable computing costume, which appears plain to naked eyes but exhibits changing patterns on photos taken at different time and location. The costume is consisted of three elliptical, interwoven orbits where the projector units are mounted upon and pointed inward to the body. A central light sensing unit is created with photo transistor to detect incoming camera flash and gives signal to trigger the projectors instantly.

“Office Brawl" - A conversational storytelling game and its creation process

This demo consisted of verbal converstation between two virtual agents and a user. It based on IS platform, and presented variable discourse management of atomic video snippets for single utterances in an integrated presentation, rendering of emotional reactions to verbal user input and a model of a general creation process.

Enhanced Touch: a wearable device for social playware

They propose a novel wearable device for sensing physical contact among people. The device can detec and record the touch of users by using bodily communication, and they also developed a app to show the record which makes the touch playful and social.

Anabiosis: An Interactive Pictorial Art Based on Polychrome Paper Computing

This one was a really nice artwoork based o their paper computing technique. When user touches the butterfly printed on paper surface, the color of the butterfly changes dynamically. More can be found

They finally won the golden award for best demo.