MSc and UG Project Ideas

Chris Greenhalgh, 2018-05-17

Preferred Projects

These specific projects are all suitable for HCI or CS


The muzicodes system ( allows musical phrases to be used as triggers in an interactive system. For example, when a musician plays the first few notes of a tune this might be defined as a code that starts the accompaniment. There are several possible projects that would use and build upon this system (and others would also be welcome).

M1. Muzicodes social

Design, prototype and evaluate a social online or mobile version of the muzicodes system. For example, this could be a competitive platform where one user can set musical challenges for other users. Or it could be a collaborative/user-generated content platform, where users share compositions incorporating muzicodes.

M2. Climb! derived products

Climb! is a composition for Disklavier piano and electronics in which the exact sequence of music played varies depending on muzicodes played/not. So each performance of the piece is different. Each performance is added to an online archive and can be explored in various ways (e.g. by musical fragment or by performance). Building on the current Climb! archive, design, prototype and evaluate new musical "products" and services that could be generated from this growing set of recordings and associated logs/metadata.

Losing Her Voice

Losing Her Voice is a multimedia opera being composed by Elizabeth Kelly in the Department of Music. It will include on-stage interaction between the singers and projected displays/processed audio (e.g. through gesture) and off-stage interaction with audience members through a mobile app. It is due to premiere at the Lakeside in April 2019.

L1. Losing her voice Mobile app

Design, implement and suppport the mobile app for Losing Her Voice that allows the audience to interact with the performance. This will involve extensive co-working with the composer and technical team (in the Mixed Reality Lab).

L2. Losing her voice multimedia tools

Design, implement and suppport one or more tools or interactive system component to support part(s) of the on-stage interaction in Losing her voice, e.g. captioning, gesture controlled interaction, multi-media presentation. This will involve extensive co-working with the composer and technical team (in the Mixed Reality Lab).

L3. Losing her voice Recording and Archive

Design, implement and suppport a post-performance archive or playback of Losing Her Voice, that will include rich metadata from system logs, etc. about e.g. uses of various media and audience interactions, that allows the audience to explore the recording in interesting ways. This will involve extensive co-working with the composer and technical team (in the Mixed Reality Lab).


Databox is a platform that allows individuals and households to manage their personal data and allow other parties to run apps or computations against their data without giving their data away ( The first public developer release of Databox was in March 2017. The kinds of data that it might have would include: home Internet of Things data; personal activity data, e.g. location, exercise; home electricity usage; home device use, e.g. media viewing. There are several possible projects that could be done based on Databox (and others would also be welcome).

D1. Databox for self-monitoring

Databox might be particularly useful for people who, for example, have mental health/wellbeing challenges, who wish to be able to keep an eye on their own everyday activity in order to spot early warning signs of, for example, an episode or mania or depression. A previous project has built a first example of self- monitoring for social anxiety (linking location to heartrate). Identify a potential user group and design and prototype a databox application that supports self-monitoring, including warnings. . Prototypes may be of varying levels of fidelity. This might focus more on a particular relevant data source (e.g. location, activity, communication) or on an end-user app (e.g. visualiation, warning algorithm, user interaction).

D2. Databox application

Identify a potential application area for Databox, recruit relevant stakeholders, and work with them to design, prototype and evaluate relevant Databox application(s). Prototypes may be of varying levels of fidelity (paper mock-ups through to complete functional Databox applications). You might also getting particular form(s) of information into databox, i.e. creating one or more "drivers".

D3. Social / Multi-user Databox

The first release of Databox will be single user; some initial UI sketches have been made for multi-user household use. Starting from these initial designs, design and evaluate approaches to managing security and permissions in a Databox with multiple users, or between multiple linked databoxes . Note that should consider issues such as sensitivities around highly individual data sources (e.g. one person's location or social media) on the one hand and shared/collective data sources (e.g. activity detected in a room, appliance and shared device use, shared cameras). This project can be approached either as a development project or as a user study.

Mobile / adaptive music

Geotracks ( is an approach to adaptive music that tailors the listening experience for a specific journey. Initial experiments used an Android player, DaoPlayer ( In parallel, a "semantic player" application has also been developed (

G1. Geotrack Authoring

The initial geotracks were manually authored, largely by editing JSON configuration files. Design, prototype and evaluate a web-based system for non-experts to author geotracks and geolists (effectively location-based playlists). Variants of this project could emphasise adaptation of the playlist as a whole or adaptation of a single track.

General topics

In general am interested in:

Most of my current work is in mobile and ubiquitous computing (including mobile games and cultural experiences), and I have done a lot of work developing mobile applications on Android as well as web applications and collaborative systems.

Most of my projects combine (to varying extents) software development, interaction design and user studies.