Chris Luginbuhl

Chris is an engineer, designer and serial entrepreneur. He worked in medical imaging research before co-founding Sentinelle Medical, a Toronto-based medical device company which sold to Hologic Inc in 2010. He has more than a dozen patents and publications in diverse fields. His work in photography and videography, combined with his expertise designing and building made OCADU's Digital Futures Master's program a perfect fit. Chris is also an active volunteer with Shambhala, an organization committed to creating good human society.

Digital Futures Graduate Students present digital media prototypes @CFCMediaLab

MDes student, Bijun Chen presenting her prototype to industry partners
Professor Immony Men and MDes Student, Shreeya Tyagi try a VR prototype
L to R: Dr. Emma Westecott welcomes Industry Partners, Dr. Martha Ladly & DF Students
Wednesday, August 23, 2017

As part of an eight-week project for CFC Media Lab and Prototyping summer course, Digital Futures Masters students developed an interactive digital project in their chosen specialty area, with feedback from faculty and industry partners at OCAD U and the CFC (Canadian Film Centre) Media Lab. The course culminated in a final critique and public exhibition of the students' digital media prototypes in which each student presented their work. Some highlights of the eighteen student projects included:

Master of Design student and visual artist Afaq Ahmed Karadia, designed a machine learning system which uses cognitive data and gesture technologies to recognize and interpret movements of the human body. Afaq’s performance uses a “virtual instrument” controlled by gesture-based movements that interacts with a musical interface to generate sound. The prototype is part of his larger research project that examines the non-functional characteristics of gesture, such as expressivity, which remains a challenge for computers.

Thoreau Bakker's project, "Sculpting with VR," uses Virtual Reality to both generate and visualize digital maquettes for future fabrication of digital sculptures at larger scales. This tool allows curators to visualize exhibitions and works before investing capital and resources into their production.

Sara Gazzaz's project, "Islamic Prayer Rituals," examines how Muslims cope, reflect, and explore spiritual seeking prayer rituals in new secular spaces. Her project emphasizes the importance of preserving cultural identity within Muslim immigrant communities in Canada. Sara created a prototype of a prayer mat equipped with sensors that trigger LED lights in sequence with prayer movements. The interactive mat will help to collect data for the creation of a documentation video of prayer rituals.

MA student Katie Micak presented, "The Alexa Experiment," which explores what it's like living with the artificial intelligence and home assistant, the Amazon Alexa. Footage was captured twenty-four hours a day via surveillance cameras in order to record discrete moments, changes in behaviour, and the evolution of the relationship between Micak and her Alexa. This will be a year long project which asks; what does the Alexa mean? 

Interestingly, many of the students’ prototypes involved technologies that limit or eliminate the need for human-to-human interaction. This was a common theme identified by the panel of industry experts; an area in the digital technology field where more research is needed to better understand new social realities.

Students began the prototyping process with the research and development stage, followed by model building, user trials, instantiations, and other forms of prototyping to help focus their primary research interests.

Dr. Emma Westecott, Associate Professor and instructor of the CFC Media Lab summer course, moderated the prototype presentations and panel discussions throughout the day: "I was thrilled to work with CFC Media Lab to enable our students to complete initial prototypes for their thesis projects. Feedback from CFC experts and industry advisors was invaluable in connecting student concepts to future application, offering them expertise central to ongoing work."

Students were also tasked with creating an “elevator pitch” to convey their prototypes in five minutes or less. After presenting their pitch, each student received feedback and advice from an expert panel of judges on how to improve the product's marketability, viability and revenue model.

View more CFC Media Lab Prototype Day pictures here:

Want to know more About Canadian Film Centre Media Lab (CFC)? Visit:

Want to know more about the Digital Futures Master’s Program? Visit:

Toronto Wearables Meetup 34

tools for making wearable electronics
Wednesday, January 18, 2017 - 7:00pm

The theme this month is “How We Make” - a look at the diverse ways in which people prototype wearable tech. Because wearable tech sits at the intersection of many fields and because it is a relatively new area there are not yet set practices and standards for how wearables are produced. Methods can range from hand sewn conductive thread circuits to mass produced printed circuit boards encased in injection molded plastic, and everything in between.

This session of TWM will use a show-and-tell format as a way to instigate discussion about how we as a community make wearables. All are welcome to bring completed or work-in-progress prototypes. Let us know if you want us to add your project to the Eventbrite listing so people willl know you’re coming. We’re still working out the details but it’ll likely be circle / round table style, though there will be a projector if you need to show anything on screen.

We look forward to seeing how YOU make!

Confirmed Show & Tellers:

  • Fluorescence - Ania Medrek, Samaa Ahmed, Sara Gazzaz

  • Quipucamayoc - Boris Kourtoukov

  • Hot Feet - Bijun Chen, Masha Karimi, Katie Micak

  • Odyssey of the Cosmos - Mary Margaret Scrimger, Leif Bloomquist

  • Cyborg Armor - Lindy Wilkins

  • Hex - Yinan Ma & Kersti Nurka 

  • More TBA

This event is open to the public.

Venue & Address: 
205 Richmond St. West, Third Floor, Room 301