Past News


  • The AlloSphere Research Groups' newest collaborative immersive media composition MYRIOI was premiered at SIGGRAPH 2020 in Washington DC in July 2020.
  • MYRIOI ("myriad particles") is the third immersive media work in a series of quantum media compositions under the direction of Dr. JoAnn Kuchera-Morin, the Director of the AlloSphere Research Group. It offers a shared experience that allows interaction with the world of the quantum: waveforms, light - the pure essence of form and shape. MYRIOI will share the experience of being immersed and interacting with myriads of particles that create currents becoming waveforms to understand and to experience viscerally the quantum, while sharing and interacting with the narrative. MYRIOI will also be featured in Leonardo, the leading international journal, published by the MIT Press, covering the application of contemporary science and technology to the arts.

    The SIGGRAPH Conference is the world’s largest and most influential conference on the theory and practice of computer graphics and interactive techniques, inspiring progress through education, excellence, and interaction.


    For more information about the AlloSphere, visit

  • "Cangjie", a VR project by MAT PhD student Weidi Zhang and Donghao Ren (PhD in Computer Science, UCSB), has been awarded a Jury Selection Award at the 23rd Japan Media Arts Festival, September 19-27 2020, Tokyo, Japan.
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    Cangjie, 2020

    Humans and machines are in constant conversations. Humans start the dialogue by using programming languages that will be compiled to binary digits that machines can interpret. However, Intelligent machines today are not only observers of the world, but they also make their own decisions. If A.I imitates human beings to create a symbolic system to communicate based on their own understandings of the universe and start to actively interact with us, how will this recontextualize and redefine our coexistence in this intertwined reality?

    This VR project provides an immersive exploration in semantic human-machine reality generated by an intelligent system in real-time through perceiving the real-world via a camera [located in the exhibition space]. Inspired by Cangjie, an ancient Chinese legendary historian (c.2650 BCE), invented Chinese characters based on the characteristics of everything on the earth, we trained a neural network that we call Cangjie, to learn the constructions and principles of all the Chinese characters. It perceives the surroundings and transforms it into a collage of unique symbols made of Chinese strokes. The symbols produced through the lens of Cangjie, tangled with the imagery captured by the camera are visualized algorithmically as abstract pixelated semiotics, continuously evolving and compositing an ever-changing poetic virtual reality. Cangjie is not only a conceptual response to the tension and fragility in the coexistence of humans and machines but also an artistic imagination of our future language in this artificial intelligent era.

  • MAT PhD student Yin Yu will be teaching a course called "Sensing the world–Exploring Wearable Technology through Soft Robotics" for the Summer Research Academies program at UCSB in summer 2020.
  • Disciplines: Biomimicry, Pneumatic Architecture, Media Arts & Technology, Human-Computer Interaction.

    Conventional wearable robots designed with rigid materials, such as metal and hard plastic, are often limited by their lower flexibility, functionality, and biological compatibility. With sensory technology and novel materials, can we rethink the wearable device as a soft and organic interface? Sensing the world is connecting the body (or mechanics), the brain (or controller), and the environment. In this course, we will focus on the emerging field of soft robotics, bringing together research and applications of wearable technology. We will introduce the concept of computational morphology in soft robotics and study the design principles using 3D modeling tools. Specific topics include body architecture, pneumatic architecture, soft mechanism, smart material, biomimicry design, geometrical morphology, sensory technology, embodied intelligence, wearable computing, and human-robot interaction. We will also discuss the soft wearable applications in art, communication, fitness, entertainment, medicine, and sports, and so on. Through a series of hands-on activities, students will explore digital fabrication, soft motion mechanisms, soft actuation, and wearable sensors. By the end of the course, students will design, modeling, and build of a wearable device, and analysis the human-robot interaction.

  • MAT professor Joann Kuchera-Morin receives a "Goleta's Finest" Innovation Award by the Goleta Chamber of Commerce for the AlloSphere Research Facility.
  • Director Dr. JoAnn Kuchera-Morin, chief designer of the three-story facility on the UC Santa Barbara campus, says the intersection of science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics has facilitated exciting new avenues for scientific discovery.

    "But it is their strong desire to welcome research partners and collaborations of all kinds, that leads the AlloSphere to make a real difference in the local community".

    Goleta’s Finest is a 70-year old tradition honoring remarkable individuals whose contributions have enhanced the Goleta community.

    The 2019 award recipients will be honored with a formal celebration on Nov. 23 from 6 to 9:30 p.m. at the beautiful Ritz-Carlton Bacara.