Digital Futures Open Show 2019

DF Open Show
Friday, February 1, 2019 - 5:00pm to 8:00pm

Opening Night: February 1st, 5-8PM (RSVP here:
Additional Open Hours: Saturday, February 2nd, 1-5PM

The collection of work presented is intended to represent a survey of current ideas, concepts, themes, theories, tools, techniques, and trends being explored by the Digital Futures community. We're excited to continue with the exhibition.

OPEN comes from the fact that this call is open to our whole community. The show will include works from current Digital Futures undergraduate students, graduate students AND faculty. Works include physical computing prototypes, data visualizations, digital entertainment, games, wearable technology, and interactive installations. For anyone who has asked the question “What IS Digital Futures anyway?” - we’re hoping this exhibition will continue to provide some answers.

This event is free and open to the public, We look forward to seeing you there!

Venue & Address: 
Graduate Gallery, Ground floor, 205 Richmond St W, Toronto, M5V 1V3
Free! RSVP at Eventbrite link below

current & flow: a Digital Futures exhibition

Friday, December 7, 2018 - 5:00pm

Featuring work from multidisciplinary creators exploring connectivity, communication, emotion, and art in the networked world.

Works exhibited by students in the Creation & Computation, Experiences & Interfaces, and Possible Futures courses.

Friday, December 7, 2018

5:00 - 8:00pm

OCADU Graduate Gallery

205 Richmond St. W


Venue & Address: 
OCADU Graduate Gallery 205 Richmond St. W
 current & flow: a Digital Futures exhibition

Graduate Programs Info Nights 2018

Meet with faculty and students from the program to help answer your questions about courses, the learning environment and degree outcomes.

Professor Emma Westecott Published in "Feminism In Play"

Friday, October 12, 2018 - 1:00pm

Associate Professor Emma Westecott has written a chapter entitled “Feminism and Gameplay Performance" which has been published in the edited collection Feminism In Play by Palgrave Games in Context.

About the Book:

"Feminism in Play focuses on women as they are depicted in video games, as participants in games culture, and as contributors to the games industry. This volume showcases women’s resistance to the norms of games culture, as well as women’s play and creative practices both in and around the games industry. Contributors analyze the interconnections between games and the broader societal and structural issues impeding the successful inclusion of women in games and games culture. In offering this framework, this volume provides a platform to the silenced and marginalized, offering counter-narratives to the post-racial and post-gendered fantasies that so often obscure the violent context of production and consumption of games culture."

Retrieved from:

Westecott, Emma. "Feminism and Gameplay Performance." Feminism in Play. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham, 2018. 251-266.

Digital Futures MDes student Afrooz Samaei competes at the Ontario Provincial 3MT

Afrooz Samaei, the winner of the OCAD U 3MT competition|who represented OCAD U at the 2018 Provincial Finals 3MT Competition at
Wednesday, April 25, 2018 - 2:30pm

Congratulations to Afrooz Samaei, the winner of the OCAD U 3MT competition, who represented OCAD U at the 2018 Provincial Finals 3MT Competition at York University on Thursday, April 19th, 2018. 20 PhD and Master's students from across Ontario had 3 minutes to present their innovative research ideas.

Afrooz's presented her project entitled, "Parabolas and the Town: Learning Abstract Symbolic Mathematics through Digital Games" in 3 minutes or less to a large audience and panel of judges consisting of:

Rob Baker

Rob Baker is best known as the guitarist for the rock band The Tragically Hip.

Christopher Hilkene

Christopher Hilkene is an environment and sustainable development professional who has provided public policy and communications advice to public, private and not-for-profit sector clients over 20 years.

Karen Kraft Sloan

With forty years in government and the private sector, Karen Kraft Sloan served Canada as the Canadian Ambassador for the Environment and as a federal member of parliament.

Natasha Ramsahai

Natasha Ramsahai is a Meteorologist at 680 All News Radio, CityNews and Breakfast Television. Prior to 680/CityNews/Breakfast Television, Natasha was a Senior Meteorologist at the CBC and key to the creation of the CBC National Weather Centre.

Afrooz holds a B.Sc. degree in Geomatics Engineering and will graduate this June from the Master of Design, Digital Futures program. Afrooz has professional experience in data and visual analytics and tutoring mathematics. Her passion for empowering younger generations with STEM skills motivated her to develop a series of math education video games for her master’s thesis, which focuses on learning abstract symbolic mathematics through video games.

Parabolas and the Town is a math educational video game that targets high school students. The goal is to help players better understand an abstract mathematical concept by connecting it to a concrete situation. The problems embedded in the game illustrate how certain abstract concepts gain meaning within a game world and provide a scenario where students are required to dig into their knowledge of algebra and put it into practice in order to be able to solve the game’s challenges.

For more information about this year's Provincial 3MT competition, visit:


Level Up 2018: Digital Futures student Ryan Mason wins Best Artistic Achievement!

bearded young man, Ryan Mason, holding a trophy
Friday, April 13, 2018

On Wednesday April 4th 2018, the 8th annual Level Up Showcase took place at the Design Exchange in Toronto. More than 75 games from over 14 schools were showcased to the public for free! This popular annual event brings together the best games made by post-secondary students each yea,r to be judged by top industry experts from AMD, Ubisoft, Uken Games, Unity, ID@Xbox and Zynga.

This year’s winners are:

Best Technical Innovation

  • 1st Place - Prime Ops from UOIT
  • 2nd Place - That Night from OCADU
  • 3rd Place - M.E.C.C. from Humber

Best Artistic Achievement

  • 1st Place - That Night from OCADU
  • 2nd Place - Zephyr from OCADU/UofT
  • 3rd Place - Super Random Heroes from Sheridan

People’s Choice

  • 1st Place - Stop Running from Brock
  • 2nd Place - Zephyr from OCADU/UofT
  • 3rd Place - Super Random Heroes from Sheridan

Best Overall Game

  • 1st Place - Super Random Heroes from Sheridan
  • 2nd Place - Radio Violence from George Brown
  • 3rd Place - Zephyr from OCADU/UofT

Digital Futures faculty are thrilled that our very own fourth-year undergrad stuent Ryan Mason won best Artistic Achievement for his game “That Night”. Ryan’s thesis game is a narrative-driven puzzle adventure set in a forgotten home on the outskirts of a small, unremarkable town. Enter into a place left untouched for over thirty five years, whose story has been left untold and secrets remain to be discovered. Play as Evelyn Young, a high school sophomore who just moved to yet another painfully mundane town in middle America. At least... that’s what she thought.

We are very proud of our ongoing collaboration with Computer Science at the University of Toronto that brings our students together to make 12 games, including the multi-nominated student game Zephyr this term.

From Fall 2018 OCAD University will be offering a Games and Play Minor offered across all faculties for students interested in game design and development, email for more information.

Watch a video of they event by Andrew McAllister an see more photos on instagram at DFundergrad.



people gathered around a game controller
Group photo of about 25 people
a man and a woman playing a video game

Come play at the 8th annual Level Up Showcase!

Wednesday, April 4, 2018 - 5:00pm to 10:00pm

The 8th annual free public event puts the spotlight on Ontario’s most talented post-secondary students in game development who use the latest technology and platforms to make video games - including Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), motion sensing, and more. Participants include more than 15  post-secondary institutions across Ontario that teach interactive media development. With over 75 games, it is the biggest not-for-profit event for players, developers, and recruiters, to get the inside scoop on the future leaders of the game industry.

The Level Up Showcase is the main event for industry, institutions, and students to network, recruit, and learn about new techniques and technologies. Canada boasts the third largest game industry in the world, with Ontario having the second highest number of game companies in the country. The Level Up Showcase is the top destination for emerging talent in this growing industry.

The Level Up Showcase 2018 is co-hosted and organized by Algonquin College, Brock University, the University of Toronto and the Digital Futures Program at OCAD University in partnership with AMD and Ubisoft Toronto.

Level Up Showcase would not be possible without the generous support of our sponsors who provide their expertise, support and equipment to help our students succeed. Thank you! This year, ID@Xbox joins and will host an exclusive workshop with over 50 students interested in developing independent games for the Xbox platform. Level Up Showcase also welcomes Zynga who have recently expanded their downtown Toronto studio and are rapidly growing! Visit their booth to find out more. This year’s event is made possible with generous corporate sponsorship from: AMD, Ubisoft Toronto, Uken Games, Unity, Xbox Canada and Zynga with catering provided by Nando’s. Featured schools include: Algonquin College, Brock University, Centennial College, Fanshawe College, George Brown College, Humber College, McMaster University, Niagara College, OCAD University, Ryerson University, Sheridan College, St. Lawrence College, UOIT, University of Toronto and York University.

Venue & Address: 
Design Exchange 234 Bay St, Toronto
Level Up poster with game characters

Digital Futures alumna Lee Jones presents her thesis, “Your Body of Water” at TEI 2018

Digital Futures alumna @byleejones (2016) presents her thesis project “Your Body of Water” at the Tangible Embedded Embodied Int
Digital Futures alumna @byleejones (2016) presents her thesis project “Your Body of Water” at the Tangible Embedded Embodied Int
Wednesday, March 21, 2018 - 2:45pm

Text Below From:

TEI 2018 is the 12th annual conference dedicated to presenting the latest results in tangible, embedded, and embodied interaction. It will be held 18th to 21st March 2018 in Stockholm, Sweden.

This year the theme of the conference is Post-digital Design. In the early days of TEI, a common assumption was that our physical mundane reality could be augmented by sprinkling it with the magic of digital technology. Over the last decade there is less mystery to the realm of digital technologies as the digital have become the mundane, inseparable from our everyday routines. The digital is also increasingly distrusted and challenged in various ways, as the divisive creator of filter bubbles and the breading ground of alternative facts.  In the post-digital era, on the other hand, we see a turn to vintage materials and craftsmanship, old media – like vinyl records – and natural materials have come to the fore, and along with the practices of making them are once more being cherished. Designing for the post digital does not mean blindly embracing nostalgia or turning away from technology – it means demystifying the digital through the design process and encouraging designs that equalise the status of digital and analogue, both in the materials and the practices.

Lee Jones is interested in combining art, science, and technology. During her undergraduate degree Lee started the publication Art & Science Journal, which has grown to over 260,000 Tumblr subscribers and been chosen as one of the best blogs by Tumblr under both the categories of Art and Science. Lee's project,  "Your Body of Water” includes the design of a prototype display that visualizes aesthetic heart rate data from a 3D camera.

Project Abstract

We present the design and implementation of Your Body of Water, a display that wirelessly gathers heart rate data using a 3D camera and then visualizes the viewer’s heart rate as water. As heart rate goes up the water gets livelier (with larger and faster waves) and as heart rate goes down the water gets calmer.The purpose of the display is to use aesthetic biofeedback data to help participants reflect on their felt bodily experience. The device went through system critique using somaesthetic appreciation design heuristics, and we describe the design themes that arose from those critiques.

Read about Lee Jones "Your Body of Water" article here

DIVERGE - Digital Futures Graduate Exhibition 2018

Thursday, April 12, 2018 - 6:00pm to Sunday, April 15, 2018 - 6:00pm

Thursday, April 12, 2018 - 6:00 PM

Friday, April 13th to Sunday, April 15th |  12PM-6PM


  1. To develop in a different direction.
  2. The evolution of different forms or structures in related species as they adapt to different environments.
  3. In a series, increasing indefinitely as more of its terms are added.

The Digital Futures Graduate Exhibition is an annual event, hosted by Graduate Studies at OCADU and our partners at the CFC Media Lab. The show features Master of Design, Master of Fine Arts, and Master of Arts thesis projects that encompasses a wide range of topics, including: augmented and virtual reality, artificial intelligence and communicative domains, civic media, digital and electronic fabrication, digital art, educational video games, gesture technologies, information visualization, immersive audio-visual environments, participatory multimedia, performances, post-physical sculpture, therapeutic devices, video and more!

"Our students don’t just make things with emerging technologies - they think creatively and critically about how, why, and when we should use and engage with these ideas and tools- and when we should not. The artworks, prototypes, demonstrations, and performances in Diverge bring this research to life in a rich interactive format. We invite our colleagues from industry, fellow universities, art, design, and maker communities to come join us for this important and exciting exhibition." -Kate Hartman, Graduate Program Director, Digital Futures.


Samaa Ahmed

Thoreau Bakker

Bijun Chen

Mudit Ganguly

Sara Gazzaz

Yawen Guo

Afaq Ahmed Karadia

Mahsa Karimi

Nadine Lessio

Ania Medrek

Katie Micak

Natasha Mody

Afrooz Samaei

Shreeya Tyagi

April Xie

Rana Zandi

Hammadullah Syed

Manik Perera Gunatilleke

DIVERGE is presented by:

CFC Media Lab and OCAD University

Venue & Address: 
49 McCaul St. Open Gallery